‘Story of Kashmir’: Journos, Actor & Ex-J&K Advisor in Discussion
David Devadas’ book ‘The Story of Kashmir’ is a “history of the politics and changing aspirations of the region”. 
David Devadas’ book ‘The Story of Kashmir’ is a “history of the politics and changing aspirations of the region”. (Photo: Shruti Mathur/The Quint)

‘Story of Kashmir’: Journos, Actor & Ex-J&K Advisor in Discussion

Senior journalist and author David Devadas on Monday, 18 March, held a discussion on ‘The Story of Kashmir’ based on his book of the same name in New Delhi on Monday, 18 March.

Speaking at the event, Devadas noted how there were factors that were common between 1930s and the last few years in Kashmir, including economic bottlenecks, societal flux, frustrated aspirations and communal antagonism.

Also part of the discussion, former advisor on Kashmir in the PMO as well as former RAW chief AS Dulat asserted that Kashmir would not be lost and would always stay with India, even as he pointed out that there cannot be any military solution to Kashmir.

"Muscular policy would never work," Dulat said, adding that in the current context, while Kashmiris want peace, Delhi does not listen anymore.

“A Kashmiri understands there’s not going to be azadi or self-determination. Azadi is not going to happen. (But) at least give the Kashmiris accommodation, dignity and respect... We have failed Kashmir and alienation has gone through the roof.”
AS Dulat

The book, in Devadas' own words, is a "comprehensive history of the geopolitics, politics, culture and changing aspirations of Kashmir". Among the various events of the past 90 years that it chronicles in detail are the assassinations of Kashmiri separatist leader Abdul Ghani Lone in 2002 and Mirwaiz Maulvi Farooq in 1990.

The families of both these leaders are influential in Jammu and Kashmir’s politics even today.

Abdul Ghani Lone’s son, Sajjad Lone, is currently an MLA from Handwara and is the chairperson of the People’s Conference. Meanwhile, Mirwaiz Maulvi Farooq’s son, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, is the chairperson of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference.

The excerpts from Davidas' book talk details events such as Mirwaiz's secret meeting with former Union Minister George Fernandes as well as Lone's meeting with the Pakistan's ISI chief and its foreign ministry officers before his assassination.

You can read the excerpts here.

The discussion on Devadas' book also saw the participation of senior journalist Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, and Kashmir-born theatre actor and director MK Raina.

Also Read : Situation in Kashmir Depressing, Says David Devadas at Book Launch

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