Podcast; Voices from the Lockdown: What about the Gujjar-Bakarwal tribes of Jammu and Kashmir?

The state of Jammu and Kashmir, now in its last two weeks, is home to a diverse set of people. The Gujjar and Bakarwal communities are the muslim nomadic tribes of this state, who have been waging their own battle over the decades since independence.

Greeshma Kuthar October 17, 2019 18:17:12 IST
Podcast; Voices from the Lockdown: What about the Gujjar-Bakarwal tribes of Jammu and Kashmir?

74th day of communication blockade since 5 August, postpaid mobile services restored, internet and prepaid mobile services still down.

The state of Jammu and Kashmir, now in its last two weeks, is home to a diverse set of people. The Gujjar and Bakarwal communities are the muslim nomadic tribes of this state, who have been waging their own battle over the decades since independence. The third largest ethnic group in the State, they are often subject to social exclusion and displacement, and have even been called traitors for aspiring political reservations. The Gujjar-Bakarwals has been battling different layers of discrimination across the state.

In today’s episode, we will speak to academic and writer Ishtiaq Ahmed Shauq about where these communities stand after the August 5th announcement of the Indian government to abrogate Article 370 and Article 35A. Ishtiaq speaks to us about what the aspirations of the Gujjar Bakarwal community has been over the years and how the national and state leadership has consistently ignored these demands.

He also elaborates on how the lives of the Gujjar-Bakarwals will stand altered post-abrogation of Article 370 and how, in the face of new boundaries within the state, the communities might be forced to move away from the traditional practise of transhumance.

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