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Unreported World - s07e01(8 April 2004)[UN(DivX)]
India - The Killing of Kashmir - 49 min
The harrowing story of the Kashmiris caught in a crossfire of rape, abduction and worse.
Peace is in the headlines as India and Pakistan begin talks to end 15 years of violence in Kashmir. But this is far from a reality for civilians caught in the crossfire between security forces and militants. Both sides abduct who they want. They torture and they kill. In this latest documentary from the acclaimed Unreported World series, Sandra Jordan and Rodrigo Vasquez bravely travel deep into Kashmir to reveal the harrowing lives of Kashmiris.
Two frightened girls weep as they sit in what remains of their home. The night before masked Indian troops burst in through the window and abducted their mother and father. “They destroyed everything,” one despairs. “They beat my father with guns and said they would kill him.” Later only their mother is released. But she has been severely beaten and is barely consciousness. She cries as she tells her daughters their father is so badly tortured he is half dead.
Until 1947 Kashmir was an independent kingdom ruled by Hindus. Now there are virtually no Hindus left. When the British left both India and Pakistan grabbed a share. But Pakistan wants India’s part and has supported the Kashmiri separatists in their bloody guerrilla war. Now there are half a million Indian troops stationed in Kashmir, fighting the militants who slip across the border to attack the troops.
But the people truly suffering are the Kashmiris themselves. More than 60,000 civilians have died in the conflict. “We are caught between both,” cries one man “The army come and torture us. After that militants come and torture us.” The villagers caught on the frontline are the most vulnerable. They live in fear of the army but are also petrified of the militants who terrorise them. “It’s tyranny,” despairs one mother. “They should give us poison for rats so that we could kill ourselves.”
Within days of their arrival the team hear of a shoot-out. They arrive to see the mutilated remains of two important militia leaders being pulled from a house. The armed forces are jubilant but for the terrrified owners this is just another day of agony in the dirty war that they wish would end. Most Kashmiris want independence. But most of all they want peace. “Life is hell here, it’s hell.” despairs one war-weary man.
India and Pakistan have long fought over Kashmir. But both are more consumed by domestic politics than any thought for the Kashmiri people. They could both end this conflict but they choose not to. Both have blood on their hands. And for the innocent Kashmiris the suffering continues.
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