Srinagar: Prolonged lockdowns are a permanent feature in Kashmir and Kashmiris caught in the siege have all along appealed world to take notice albeit without eliciting much response.
New Delhi clamped latest lockdown on Kashmir on the midnight of August 4 2019, followed it by scrapping states special status, disbanding its legislative assembly and then splitting it into two federally administered zones. Protest voices were chocked and even leaders who swore by the Indian democracy were put behind bars without any charge. People, eight million of them, were locked down in their homes without internet and without phones. Yes you read it right without any communication network. This lockdown continued for seven months and eighteen days. Only few weeks later they now find themselves in another lockdown.
But this time Kashmiris are not alone.
With world now virtually forced into a lockdown by a noval pandemic, Kashmiris and others on twitter are taking a sly dig at the international community.
Kashmiris, and those who sympathise with them, are drawing comparisons between the current lockdown in the world with that of Kashmir.
“Dear World How is the Lockdown? Kashmir” the phrase popularised by cricket legend Shoaib Akhtar is trending on twitter and bogging down twiterati in the complex politics of Kashmir conflict and away from the lurking fear of rampaging Coronavirus.
Netizen Yasir Qureshi tweeted: Takhayul Mai Achanak Tasveer Ban Rahi Hai/ Yeh Dunya Rafta Rafta Kashmir Ban Rahi Hai
— محمد یاسر قریشی (@YasirQuraishe) March 24, 2020
Dear world and Indians if you Don't know how to survive and pass time in a lockdown Ask Kashmiris . Kashmiris facing this lockdown from many decades without internet .@jk_BNM #KashmirLockedWorldLocked pic.twitter.com/6wYUat88HP
— Sehrish Kashmiri (@Sahrishkhaan) March 25, 2020
Increase the 21 Day Lockdown by 6X, add indefinite suspension of phone *and* net services to the mix, maybe, just maybe, you will get an idea of what people in Kashmir went through for months on end. Still on 2G btw. In this moment of crisis.
— Raheel Khursheed (@Raheelk) March 24, 2020
Good as @PMOIndia announces nation wide lockdown Now ppl will realise how Kashmir felt during lockdown
Karma surely gets ur back.
— RiA D'Souza (@RiaRevealed) March 24, 2020
When. Speak to anyone in Kashmir, they say, Ase Che hael, lockdown without access, under brutal force are routine and their impact is hard to assess. Rest of us are just feeling an iota of inconvenience. May God save us all https://t.co/oh12Y57zxl
— Idrisa Pandit (@takhtsulaiman) March 24, 2020
I’m in favour of complete lockdown in India. But at least now think about what people in Kashmir must be going through for the last 6 months without internet even without a pandemic situation.#omarabdullah @ghulamnazad @OmarAbdullah @MehboobaMufti @shahfaesal pic.twitter.com/Y1d4hdkX3N
— Varun Choudhary (@varunchoudhary2) March 24, 2020
Dear world, how is the lockdown?
Dear world, how are the travel bans?
Dear world, how is the fear?
Dear world, how is the separation from loved ones?
Dear world, did you favorite restaurant close down?
— Ali Keskin (@alikeskin_tr) March 21, 2020
Indians begin getting a taste of Kashmir-type lockdown
— It’s now you pile up stocks for at least two weeks. But don’t hoard
— Feed poor and needy
— Curse coronavirus regularly. Kashmiris keep cursing politicians who made a mess there
— Finally, Ishwar se prathna kartey rahe https://t.co/CDu0BmwD91
— Baba Umar (@BabaUmarr) March 24, 2020
I landed in #Kashmir today and — damn it — the curfew gives me vibe of August 2019 lockdown. But I didn't get a part: the checkpoints and frisking?
Did anyone tell forces that the lockdown is for social distancing to avoid #COVID19 spread and not just another day here?
— Yashraj Sharma (@yashjournals) March 20, 2020
Modi’s virtual internet lockdown has kept 8 Million Kashmiris in dark about #coronavirus – Pakistan was then not wrong to raise #Kashmir in the SAARC video conference on #COVID2019 https://t.co/1K5qdg1VxC
— Ashok Swain (@ashoswai) March 18, 2020
Yes, we feel the pain of people in Kashmir since 19 Jan 1990
And yes, no internet connection or low speed like 2G for the last few months is a great human rights violation !! 🙏🏻🙏🏻
— Pallavi (@pallavict) March 24, 2020
Military lockdown in #Kashmir knows only laying rolls of razor wire, erecting barricades & making people do sit-ups.
Police in Mallorca, Spain is entertaining people, who are locked down in homes due to Coronavirus, in a unique way to help them kill boredom & anxiety. pic.twitter.com/PbhBSg2HiY
— Rouf (@RoufBhat_) March 22, 2020
Most of the lands that are troubled in world are pious and have magical energies and now it’s all Karma that’s coming back. #kashmir #Palestine #syria #ghaza #mexico #sudan #Yemen #Afghanistan #Israel #iraq #iran pic.twitter.com/QZLEn046cT
— Namisha Raj (@Namisha) March 25, 2020