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Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 211 of 2019

1235hrs:

Matters can move very very slowly here in AJK and no less than in the Neelam Valley. I have spent the best part of the last month and a half here.


Sharda village looking serene today

I may as well provide an overview of what's happened so far, in the pursuit of public interest:

Background:


The people of Neelam in particular were shattered by cross LOC firing between 1988 and 2003. Those who lived directly in the line of fire were most affected, particularly anywhere between Chelhana in the South and Diwaarian in the North. Even basic items such as salt may have sold for as much as 100 rupees per kg, which in peace time would have cost as little as 2 rupees per kg. Many citizens had to carry a range of essential items on their bare backs, all the way from Muzaffarabad to Neelam while trying to avoid cross-fire. Education, health, livelihood and even one's sanity was elusive during this era. All this conflict took place without the consent or instigation of the local people. They were literally lambs to the slaughter.

Whatever happened in 1947 was also without local consent or instigation.


The 2005 cross LOC travel permit system and subsequent trade also had little to do with local consultation. Hence, to date only relatives can travel across and that only after various loops of verification are surpassed. The very agents responsible for instigating and prolonging conflict in the territory were given the responsibility of vetting civilian travel across the LOC. A cruel irony if there ever was one. 


Cross LOC trade has overall done more harm than good because the major beneficiaries are Indian and Pakistani wholesalers. Despite frequent agitation by local traders no 'mandi' or wholesale market could be established at Chakothi, Hattian, Garhi Dupatta or Muzaffarabad. In a similar manner, neither could such a 'mandi' be established in Tithrinote, Hajeera or Rawalakot in Poonch division.

Intermittent firing has continued since 2003 but the people of Neelam have made great efforts to resume a normal life. Yet they are still far from utilising their highly fertile minds and able bodies. An example is that despite a sharp increase in tourism into the Valley from Pakistani tourists in the past couple of years, many locals are still unable to take advantage of an enlarged consumer market. Despite owning livestock, most are still unable to deliver genuine dairy products to these consumers. Furthermore, products related to art, craft and local culture that can be made at home and sold to these tourists are still in their infancy. 


Revitalising Sharda:


Great yet unexpected efforts have been made by civil society on both sides of the LOC to re-open Sharda to its most committed devotees, viz. the Kashmiri Pandits. Led most ably and energetically by Ravinder Pandita, who heads Save Sharda Committee. Though this people to people contact initiative has made great strides, it hasn't come without great cost to people's liberty on this side. For example, a young teenager (Kashif of Dosut) who was instrumental in putting up a portrait of Sharda Devi at Sharda Peeth a couple of years ago, was kept in an interrogation cell for 2 days by Pakistan's unbridled clandestine agencies for his sincere efforts.

Now that the struggle has matured at ground level and the Pakistani State has reacted somewhat by shepherding a 5 member delegation of Pakistan Hindu Council here last month; it appears that all cross LOC efforts to revive Sharda according to the public interest of Jammu & Kashmir will be sabotaged by the Pakistani State.

All indications are that they intend to open Sharda initially for the Pakistani Hindu community, who will double up as protectors of the Pakistani State's interests in the region. Once they are settled here - in Sharda - then the Pakistani State will - in a process totally controlled and beneficial to them - envisage opening up Sharda to Hindus, Buddhists and others from throughout the world but via Pakistan and Kohalla (the border of AJK with Pakistan in Muzaffarabad division). Indeed, Ramesh Kumar Vankwani (Patron-in-chief of Pakistan Hindu Council) has effectively indicated as much in an Urdu article published in Kashmir Link on the 29th of June:


Kashmir Link - 29 June 2019
Here's an English version which preceded the above by a day, on the Pakistan Hindu Council's website

What we have ascertained from deliberations with civil society in Neelam in particular and throughout AJK in general, is that such a procedure would provide little benefit to the aspiring citizens of Neelam Valley and could set up conditions that instigate a repeat of Amarnath 2008. Whereby locals who had originally benefited from increased trade on account of the annual Yatra (Hindu pilgrimage), were gradually ousted to make way for a management team from India. That summer witnessed an unprecedented blockade of the Jammu - Srinagar highway and even a 'Muzaffarabad Chalo' (Let's go to Muzaffarabad) movement to circumvent the blockade. The movement was only pacified when it was decided that a local (J & K) management team would oversee the Yatra.

It could be argued that the impending scenario in Sharda could prove to be even more explosive. Though the local people refrain from fully expressing their deep resentment of the Pakistani State in public, it is my duty as an independent researcher to be as clear as possible and avoid ambiguity in approach. I have no such limitations that the local people suffer from. It should always be remembered that any local who has expressed their feelings fully has always been a victim of human rights violations by Pakistan's deep State. An example in this regard would be that the women who marched en masse against militancy and subsequent cross-firing in 2013 were later ordered to report to the local Pakistani army commander and sternly warned to not create further embarrassment for the Pakistani army or else they would face consequences.

It is our contention that the re-opening of Sharda Peeth should be overseen by the AJK government sans interference by the Pakistani State and with sustained consultation with the local community in Sharda, the district of Neelam as a whole and the Kashmiri Pandit community. All matters of religious significance should be controlled by the Kashmiri Pandit community and the cross LOC permit rules should be widened to mutually incorporate religious tourism on both sides of the divide.

All other matters of public significance including infrastructure, environmental protection, village/town/tehsil planning and the rebuilding of a world class university should be done in consultation between the AJK government, the Kashmiri Pandit community, the local community in Sharda and the people of district Neelam in general. 

In short, the Kashmiri Pandit community should take responsibility for renovation of Sharda Peeth and other significant religious places in the area while overall planning & development of the region should be done in consultation with all the stakeholders referenced above. The Pakistani State has much on its plate in its own territory and would do well to re-open the hundreds - if not thousands - of Mandirs and Gurdwaras there. Territorial expansionism cannot cut in this day and age.

Such a procedure would protect public interest and only then should Sharda be re-opened  for the rest of the world. Be they Indian or Pakistani Hindus or anybody else in the world.

Over the past couple of months, I have spent most of my time in the Neelam Valley and interrogated public opinion extensively in order to come up with the above suggestion. We are now in the process of enlisting 10 members of civil society from throughout the Neelam Valley to promote, protect and liaise with the AJK government on the above proposed procedure.   

Overview of current/ongoing work on Sharda:

As described already, there has been intense consultation with various stakeholders in Neelam Valley and other parts of AJK on Sharda's impending re-opening. This included vox populi of 5 women and 5 men (mainly various professionals in their field) followed by 16 prominent traders from Chelhana in the South of the district to Kel in the North. 

2 questions were put to each person:

1) What is their understanding (of the importance) of Sharda?
2) What would be the effect on Neelam Valley of Sharda's re-opening?

All bar one interviewee had a very positive, if well-calculated approach. Off the record discussion with all other stakeholders (apart from the interviewees cited above) was also full of imagination and most of them thought that this would be an opportunity to decrease the stranglehold on this society by the Pakistani State.

What people can't say in public, I feel it my duty to translate into the public domain. The only way of synchronising these genuine sentiments is for 10 people of this district to make a public stand. I will take the necessary risk involved in promoting that stand on the ground.

My other discussions on the subject have been with politicians, the judiciary, bureaucracy and the AJK administration in general. Many of them suggested that I engage with Pakistan's agencies directly on the subject as they were all incapable of doing so. In response, I explained that I could only speak to them on the record and any off the record conversation would automatically be mired in ambiguity. I would be in no position to confirm or deny any possible allegation that may be levelled against me. In any case, I don't consider them to be a legitimate stakeholder in this territory and hence the impression arising from such a meeting would indicate that I do. 

The indirect response I received from Pakistan's deep State was that any possible meeting would have to be off the record. Now, that is not possible for the aforementioned reasons.

In the meantime, while continuing consultation with the public on the 10 possible nominations for protecting public interest - we visited Narda Lake at c. 15 to 17,000 feet above sea level - which blends and compliments Sharda in many respects. I've also been thinking - on a visceral level - over the past few months to spend a night at Sharda Peeth, within the confines of the Mandir. To clean it, put up a fresh portrait of Sharda Devi and get the notice for people to take off their shoes when entering the sanctum, to be put up again. It was visible on Ramesh Kumar's visit but promptly taken down again soon after.

In this respect, I decided to approach the Pakistani army's brigadier who sits in Kel, to inform him of my intention. Earlier, on the 20th (of July) I had spoken to the army stationed at the Peeth, who had suggested that I meet the brigadier in this regard. He wasn't available but I was met by a Major Noman. Here's a video overview of our discussion on the 25th (of July) at Kel:



Alas, nothing transpired from this discussion despite the assurances given and I then proceeded to Sharda army camp on the 27th to try and meet the sitting colonel in this regard. However, I was informed that he was absent too (despite information to the contrary obtained from locals) and a young casually-clothed man came to meet me, who would neither give me his name, rank or even where he originated from. He said he had been given the duty of entertaining me and despite being tight lipped he was adamant that the Pakistani army only dealt with security matters; that all other matters were dealt with by the AJK government and in particular its 'Department of Tourism & Archeology'. 

I did try to explain to him that the AJK government and all its sub entities look up to the Pakistani army and its agencies for direction on every matter of any public significance. Indeed, they wouldn't dare do otherwise. I think that comment fell on deaf ears and so the charade over who actually controls AJK continues....notwithstanding the heavy use of the word Azad (free) when describing this territory.

In any case, I did in turn speak to AC (Assistant Commissioner) Sharda whom I've known from his previous placement as AC in Dadyaal. He suggested that I contact the DG (Director General) of the Department of Tourism & Archeology and ask him to send a notification of permission for me to stay at the Mandir. I duly contacted him and some other related citizens who are in a position to impress upon the DG but I have received no such notification yet. 

n.b. most of the above was updated on the 2nd of August - Day 214 of 2018)

Update 1520hrs....

While I was writing the above......(I had barely written a couple of paragraphs when.....

We're just hearing some earth shattering sounds in Sharda. They sound like heavy mortar shells and a couple have flown over Sharda bazaar and landed on a peak beyond. One has landed near Sharda Peeth I am informed.


Half an hour later, the sounds are still intermittent but have become more distant. We had learned of such shelling in Athmaqam about an hour before. Some shells have also fell in Tejian and burnt some homes, a few kilometres South of Sharda.







Here is some audio footage of events as they happened in Sharda, from the first shell to the last:




Meanwhile, it is now becoming clear that a series of mortar shells have hit Sharda village where at least a couple of children are injured. One shell fell in the Kishenganga river, at least 3 hit the village and 2 flew beyond the main bazaar (and over me!) and fell on an adjoining peak.


1604hrs:


Shelling remains intermittent but its frequency as well as intensity has decreased.


1618hrs:


The overall picture of what's happening throughout this sector will become clearer gradually but here's an insight from the other side:




I hope for the sake of peace, this madness on either side can stop forthwith. It's not charming to be in a conflict zone.


A plea for peace was made by Shri Ravinder Pandita, vanguard of Save Sharda Committee and based in Delhi, in response to my tweet:




Leepa Sector:

The villages of Naukaut, Channian, Kaiserkot and others in the vicinity have been under heavy fire from what are described as heavy machine guns from the Indian-controlled side. 


News is filtering through of cross LOC firing as far down South as Bhimber and Nowshehra (on the Indian-controlled side).....this is looking grim.


1644hrs:


We can confirm that c. 18 year old Noman s/o Matiullah has succumbed to his injuries. He was in the village near Sharda Peeth. He had been hit directly on his forehead by a shell while working on the construction of his sister's house in Sharda village. Meanwhile, 5 others are reported to be injured too. It should be noted that there isn't much in terms of even first aid medical relief in Sharda. The injured have to either go North to Kel (c.20 kms) or South to Athmaqam (c.60 kms) or even further South to Muzaffarabad (c.140 kms). They may even have to travel yet further to Pakistan's capital city, a further 140 or so kilometres away. 


1700hrs:


While I'm catching up on news from elsewhere and updating myself on what's happened in Sharda, I notice various people coming to the hotel balcony where I'm sitting (by the river Kishenganga and overlooking Sharda village where the Peeth is) and some of them ask me for ID. I duly lay out my State Domicile certificate for all subsequent inquiries. I do notice that there is some suspicion over my use of a laptop and phones while shells are intermittently flying in many directions.  

After a few such inquiries, another agency operative arrives whom I know to be a local and who likewise is familiar with my work. He puts everybody else at ease and urges me to continue whatever I am doing.

However by 5pm local police arrive and quietly inform me that top level Pakistani army operatives have been infuriated by the upload of my video (on facebook) and for my safety I should accompany them to Sharda police station. They carefully and politely escort me whilst ensuring that all my equipment is safe. 

At the police station they take a statement from me, log a record of my equipment, then put it away in their depository before asking me to relax in their own living quarters.

Later in the evening a local gentleman who described himself as Syed Nasir Shah and said that he represents Pakistan's intelligence agency(ies) begins asking me silly, inane and intrusive questions; like how many wives and how many brothers and sisters do I have, in the presence of local police officers. I decline to answer any of his needless questions and ask him to tell his superiors to come and put these questions to me themselves, if they can be so bold. 

He excuses himself, apologises that he is merely following orders and explains that he has no alternative livelihood and thus.....

Nobody representing Pakistan's army or agencies came and I spent the rest of the evening and night catching up on much needed rest. News of what had happened elsewhere was filtering through in conversations between local police.  

A splinter of a shell had also fallen in the courtyard of the police station, not many hours ago.

As accumulated before in my travels and multiple experiences hitherto, I am reminded that Pakistan's roving agencies stick their head into every conceivable matter that arises in the police station. From family disputes to arguments over the awarding of road contracts. This is all on top of their illegal role as protectors of Pakistan's national interest in AJK and GB.  

Even a lowly agency operative can prove to have a heavier presence in the territory than a district's superintendent of police (SP).

We also learn that the Pakistani media has paid scant attention to the plight of cross LOC firing in Neelam Valley or elsewhere in AJK. This also cements a popular yet less publicly expressed view that AJK (and GB) do not feature prominently in the minds of Pakistani society or polity and this is reflected by their media coverage.

Judging from the Pakistani army's reaction to my video, they also do not want us to show the world what we go through. They want us to suffer in silence as if we had made a formal application to or prayed for Indian shelling/firing on us. The latter maybe intermittent but Pakistan's suppression is constant, suffocating and overbearing. Trying to control the flow of information is not only a violation of human rights, it is a desperate attempt to control the public narrative. That is not our neighbour's prerogative.

The Pakistani army's presence in AJK is by no means a deterrent for Indian army shelling/firing. What they describe as 'security' is in fact their ruse for profiting from a conflict economy, at the expense of us as well as the citizens of Pakistan at large. In their absence, there would be no security issue. Indeed, they are the security issue. If they were not here, there would be no need for the Indians to shell this territory. Any fight or conflict needs two to tango. Take one away and the perceived rationale for conflict evaporates. 

If you begin counting the amount of Indian and Pakistani army casualties and then compare their numbers to the amount of civilians that innocently die in such encounters; you will realise how offensive it is for the Pakistani army to act like owners of this territory.  

This is slavery at its most acute level. In short, I am incensed at the Pakistani State's repeated interference in our pursuit for self-determination, which would inevitably involve their military withdrawal.

Meanwhile, I have to take into account that our people (including the AJK government and all its sub entities) have to pretend to be obsequious (servile) in front of the Pakistani State to survive or prosper.

I wish to borrow the following phrase to emphasise my point:

"I expose slavery in this country, because to expose it is to kill it. Slavery is one of those monsters of darkness to whom the light of truth is death."


Frederick Douglass

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Just to remind you of the internal narrative when such conflict arises:



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Now, what happened on this day? How many of our citizens were killed by the Pakistani army? Did anybody ever write a comprehensive report? 

These are all questions that remain unanswered:



Having said that, remembering this day is important.

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Something could be learned or at least put into perspective from the following video:


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Monday, 29 July 2019

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 210 of 2019

0834hrs:

My morning walk (on an empty stomach) has regained its place as a regular daily feature. 

Now, what irks me most about my people (both people and government in AJK) is our attitude towards waste disposal. Having spent a better part of this past month in Sharda, our enjoyment of the pristine environment is killed by the presence of litter everywhere. 

There is nothing Islamic or human about this:

Garbage dumping on the banks of the Kishenganga
 .......

There is also nothing Islamic about the alleged kidnapping of youth by Pakistan's clandestine agencies in Bagrot, Gilgit. These local citizens of GB are protesting the disappearance of 3 youth and are demanding that they be produced in front of a court of law:



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Staying with GB, does this not make sense?



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Sunday, 28 July 2019

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 209 of 2019

1032hrs: 

I've reached that stage where my writing should get a lot more internal, intrinsic and introspective of the society that I am operating in. It is perhaps a trait of human nature that whenever anybody exploits us and/or our land/resources, they do so by exploiting our inherent weaknesses. If we continue to falter in addressing our weaknesses, there will be many more Khans, Modis and Trumps who will dance around our aspirations. 

We will continue to play the fool with our own status. Particularly by ignoring those who work tirelessly on our collective behalf by sacrificing their personal aspirations, while we celebrate being played by regional leaders and the international community.

This reverse can and should begin in Sharda:

Fog or low clouds on Kishenganga between rain at Sharda yesterday
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People should also understand that any place with such a rich heritage cries out for continuation or revival. Here's just one example:



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Contributing to our society's paralysis is this utterly needless blood sport:




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Saturday, 27 July 2019

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 208 of 2019

1043hrs:

This morning while returning from my walk in Sharda:

What nature has given, our collective conduct defies
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Catching up with our close neighbours in Gilgit Baltistan once again:


I shall reproduce the series of tweets in the above referenced thread here, for the convenience of my readers:

Name: Iftikhar Hussain Karbalai




The separatist movement in #GilgitBaltistan is as long as the separatist movement in #AJK. Both are further divided by the favorite occupier of the other side. The demand to open the route and demand for basic human rights can land you in prison for 90 years.

The 90 Years story started in 2010

In 2010 a natural disaster killed 19/20 people and wiped out a couple of towns from the face of the earth at #Hunza #Gilgit, over 6000 people were permanently displaced and about 30 thousand people of #Gilgit were affected.

This natural disaster at Attabad created an artificial lake now named #AttabadLake and the displaced people requested the authorities to demolish the artificial lake as it was increasing in size and it would take in some other towns with the passage of time.

In the end, the lake became 21 KM long and 109 metres deep. 

This #artificial lake still stands and another natural disaster can wipe out the whole valley.

When no solution was provided by the authorities, people of #GilgitBaltistan started #peaceful #protests. During the protest at Aliabad in August, the security forces opened fire on the civilians and killed a father and son.

The #SecurityForces with the help of the premier intelligence agency of Pakistan started raiding the houses of the people who started this agitation and accused them of being indian agents.

=>"Its very common to call every Kashmiri an Indian agent if he speaks his mind."

This story is just about one person so I'm going to leave all other separatists out of this discussion and I apologize for that too. 

This is the story of a man who received life imprisonment for 90 years from the Pakistani puppet courts in Occupied #GilgitBaltistan

Comrade #IftikharHusainKarbalai is a member of a #GilgitBaltistan separatist movement known as Karakorum National Movement who have the following very basic demands:

Independent constitutional assembly and judicial system for GB

=> which Paksitan has not given to any part of the Occupied Kashmir territory including #AJK and #Gilgit #Baltistan.

End of #CulturalGenocide, mega-dams, trophy smuggling, illegal hunting (this is done through army and white folks pay up to 100K USD for these hunts).

Royalty over #rivers, #glaciers, #forests, #minerals, and end damaging #Siachen, #Shimshal and #Khunjerab glaciers. Stop considering these places  as #weapons testing grounds.

End interference from china and open historical routes towards, #Ladakh, #Srinagar and #Badakhshan .

If #GB is part of #Kashmir why has Pakistan ended the State Subject Rule and why is Pakistan changing the demography of Gilgit Baltistan. Restoration of this rule is mandatory.  

Iftikhar Hussain was arrested when he was protesting the killing of a father and son by the security forces. During this protest, they were demanding to investigate the killing of innocent civilians and to end army-backed state terrorism.

Army and police torture cells, detentions, and FOS. They were demanding the end of Black Laws like ATA and NAP.

After arrest, Iftikhar Husain was trialed and falsely convicted while a total of 71 years of imprisonment was handed to him by Pakistani Anti-Terrorism Courts.

Let me be clear Iftikhar Hussain has never carried nor preached to fight against army with guns. He believes the issue of #GilgitBaltistan is a political issue and should be resolved by dialogue and not with gun. Yet he still received 71 years of imprisonment.

Just to be clear. This is the story of one man, there are many others like him

After seven years, in an additional FIR another 19 years of #imprisonment was added onto his 71 years of Imprisonment. So, a total of 90 years of imprisonment is given for peaceful protests, demand for basic human rights and a chance to represent our own selves.

Welcome to our HELL

This is #OtherKashmir

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While working this morning, across the river Kishenganga I noticed a children's assembly taking place. The following thoughts assembled in my mind:



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Friday, 26 July 2019

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 207 of 2019

0000hrs:

I've just missed out on posting on Day 206 by a few seconds!

We returned to Sharda (6,200 feet) from Narda (Lake at 15,000 feet) this afternoon after 72 hours of the most gruelling physical journey I've ever undertaken in 47 years.

The elation felt at achieving this feat was worth every exhausted bone in my body.



...

Meanwhile, activism for re-opening Sharda for Kashmiri Pandits motors on. Led admirably and tirelessly by Ravinder Pandita of Save Sharda Committee:


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Conditions for public interest activists in Gilgit Baltistan have always been more severe than in AJK and even the Kashmir Valley in some respects:


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Staying with Gilgit Baltistan, apart from human interaction let's see how animals interact in this region:



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Youth of Khwaja Seri conferring outside PS Sharda

Coming back to Sharda, this morning the youth of Khwaja Seri urged me to accompany them to Sharda Police Station to pursue the progress of investigation into the alleged rape by Abid Shah of Kharigam (near Sharda) a few days ago:



A brief profile of his alleged victim:

- 17 yrs old
- FSC 2nd Yr Student
- D/O Khwaja Waheed - of Khwaja Seri

A strong discussion ensues at the police station where we learn that the concerned investigating officer and Station House Officer (SHO) have taken Abid Shah to the district capital of Athmaqam for interrogation by SP Neelam. Meanwhile, staff present try to defend their investigation which the youth are not convinced of:

It is apparent that:

- The police have used weak charges, namely 10 ZA (HA) and 14 ZA which are easily bailable.
The alleged perpetrator has committed this sort of crime multiple times before. It is further alleged that gang rape has been the modus operandi.
- There are 2 other people in custody who remain at Sharda police station, allegedly connected to this crime. Upon request, I was not allowed to meet them. It is claimed that there were at least 5 co-conspirators.   
- It is alleged that Abid Shah's co-conspirators were hotel staff at Benazir Palace. There is also speculation that these staff double as government employees at Bagh University.
- It is not even clear if a forensic investigation has been pursued by the police. In any case, the only forensic lab available is in Lahore. There is no such facility in AJK and thus costs money, involves considerable delay in clarifying investigations here. It appears that the police are usually discouraged from taking such steps. 
- It is also claimed that various powerful people are behind the silencing of such crimes, which interconnect various other vices in society.

I explained to the police that I have worked on many cases before and a lot of effort is taken to obtain even a semblance of justice, never 100%. This case needs to be different.

Some of the youth are keen on blocking roads throughout the district of Neelam and to extend agitation throughout AJK. I explain to them that they should verify and ensure that the alleged victim's statement is wholly true. That they should then pursue 5 levels of the local police structure consistently and meaningfully:

Namely, 

1) Investigating officer
2) SHO (Station House Officer)
3) DSP (Deputy Superintendent)
4) PDSP (Prosecuting Deputy Superintendent)
5) SP (Superintendent)


Having gone through the above process, they should then pursue other avenues of peaceful protest.


Meanwhile, discussing this matter with the residents of Sharda confirms many of the allegations cited above. It is also clear that the local people want justice to be done, in a manner which creates a deterrent for such practices in future. They realise that the image, dignity and honour of Neelam is at stake. 

I would add that governance cannot operate without an efficient administration and judiciary. Our society has lagged way behind in all fields thus far since 1947. Our government as well as our people need to sharpen up quickly. Otherwise.....

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Where there is despair, there is always hope.
Where there are tears, you will always find a smile.



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Monday, 22 July 2019

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 203 of 2019

0822hrs:

We are embarking on a trek that will take us above 15,000 feet and hope to deliver you exclusive footage on return. Let's hope the weather remains in our favour.

Here's a video of the beginning of our journey:



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Sunday, 21 July 2019

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 202 of 2019

2248hrs:

Spending quality time in Sharda.....

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Meanwhile, barely a few dozen kilometres away in a northerly direction:


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And South of us in Muzaffarabad:



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Saturday, 20 July 2019

Daily Diary (DD) - Day 201 of 2019

0235hrs:

Hot on the heels is AJK civil society in the diaspora:


So, despite three separate protests followed by handing over a memorandum on each occasion to the Pakistani embassy in London - without any response whatsoever - the AJK diaspora has decided to write to their respective MPs in the UK as well as political representatives in other democratic countries, on the looming environmental disaster in AJK. This MP (in letter above) responded within 24 hours.

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Take this as a reminder for what's happening later today in my old university:



I hope to join you in some shape or form.....

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Squashing the distance between London and Sharda:



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At the event:



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Daily Diary (DD) - Day 321 of 2019

1913hrs: Mirpur, Kotli, Gulpur..................Gurutta It has been a while since my vehicle last broke down. Did it have to happen o...