After the the recent morphed black-and-white photographs of celebrities with wounds from pellet guns went viral, a Kashmiri cartoonist has used the iconic Kashmir Ki Kali (1964) film poster to convey the brutal effects of pellets fired by crowd-control guns.
Srinagar-based cartoonist Mir Suhail modified the poster of the blockbuster romance starring Shammi Kapoor and Sharmila Tagore to show the actress with a pellet injury in one eye. He got with the idea while watching Shah Rukh Khan defuse a bomb in Kashmir in the 2012 film Jab Tak Hai Jaan on television. He realised the power of Bollywood and the need to present an alternative to mainstream narratives.
"I thought, what would Kashmir Ki Kali look like if it had existed now?" Suhail said. "It was a kind of protest. I want to make people realise that they should view the Kashmir situation from a critical rather than a simplistic perspective." Suhail further extended the idea to a series of famous paintings, including Mona Lisa, Girl With a Pearl Earring, Whistler's Mother and a self-portrait by Vincent Van Gogh. Through these famous paintings, I also hope to reach an international audience and make them understand what's happening in Kashmir," Suhail said.
I can't believe I donated to Aam Aadmi Party. Now I feel stupid. What a let down it has been! The main problem with AAP is that it has never transitioned from civil society activism to a mature political party that gives governance through good policies. Earlier it was protests, now its daily confrontation. None of the promises it made have been fulfilled, or in the direction of being fulfilled. Worst, some of the more mature people have all been kicked out. What's left is Arvind Kejriwal and his BIG EGO, and hundreds of sycophants who stoke it every day. This is not what I supported a year ago. Shame on you! AAP is now worse than even the corrupt parties of India. At least they get something done.
Over 300 people have been afflicted with injuries from the pellet guns used by security forces, many of them resulting in permanent disfigurement or loss of eyesight.
Suhail is not the only Kashmiri artist to depict the recent conflict in the state. For instance, artist Masood Hussain made a series of sketches of young Kashmiri boys with shrunken pupils. The communication BlackSheep.Works and the human rights group Jammu Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society also released three posters in Braille as part of the #KashmirBlindSpot campaign against the use of pellet guns.
The Article First Appeared HERE
Be Part of Quality Journalism
Quality journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce and despite all the hardships we still do it. Our reporters and editors are working overtime in Kashmir and beyond to cover what you care about, break big stories, and expose injustices that can change lives. Today more people are reading Kashmir Observer than ever, but only a handful are paying while advertising revenues are falling fast.