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Friday, January 27, 2012

Inshallah Kashmir : The Incomplete Story !!!

I first heard about this movie from a news channel...CNNIBN I think.. and when I heard it was a movie based on Kashmir and that the Censor Board had banned it, I all the more wanted to see it.  Then came the news that the makers would be releasing it online for 24 hrs on 26th Jan as a protest against the Censor Board.  I could not be more proud of this guy.  I mean the whole online release was such a damn good idea.  Then the day arrived with me searching for the link desperately.  Got it and watched.  Some five minutes into the movie and I was all tears hearing the plight of the people who were interviewed.  Whole movie finished and I was still staring at my computer, as though waiting for more to come.  It is then that I realised that the whole movie was incomplete.  It was such a skewed collection of memories.  

This is what the website of the movie maker, Ashwin Kumar says about this movie

" Testimonies of ordinary Kashmiris recount a brutal militancy and its terrible response.  Dodging agents of Indian armed-forces, the filmmakers were able to obtain rare testimonials in the highest militarized zone in the world.  The film tells how freedom is conceded and replaced by fear, governance by institutionalize oppression and a paradise made desolate on the watch of India: a secular, democratic republic."

When you say the movie was about Kashmiris, I am sorry what Kashmiri's are you talking about.  Taking interviews of Ex-militants and showing us stories of how they were tortured, is that the story of Kashmir?? What is the point in interviewing an ex-militant who has no regret for what-so-ever he did, and infact goes on to say that he is interested in making Kashmir an Islamist state and will further take over all of India ?? Is this the story of Kashmir ?? Yes women were raped which was heinous, but what about the KP women who were being raped and murdered ?? What happened to that story ?? What was this movie all about ?? Ahhh yes now I get it.. the sentence highlighted... it was about with how much difficulty you recorded these interviews.. it was about blowing your own trumpet, it was not about the Kashmir issue.  And you were really expecting the Censor board to release this!!!!

In my opinion, Ashwin Kumar could have made this a better presentation, by talking to the displaced Kashmiri Pandits.  He could have spoken to such people who are still living in tents in places like Jammu.  He should have included them.  It now feels like he forgot that they even existed.  On being questioned on twitter, he replied, "When a soldier is willing to speak openly without coaching, army press monitoring, fear of bosses, i'll gratefully include his story".  Well then Ashwin Kumar why did you not speak to Kashmiri Pandits, they are not scared of the administration.  

It is a sad state in which the people there are living, but that does not make the plight of the Pandits any better.  They were raped and chopped.  And Mr. Wajahat Habibullah thinks they should have stayed in Kashmir.  They should not have fled.  Well, alright then there are people who are living there, yes Kashmiri Pandits in tents and schools, what is being done for them.  Such a shame on you Habibullah !!!

Ashwin Kumar I understand that these interviews were taken some time back, but when you compiled them into a film did your intelligent brain not tell you that it was incomplete.  You went to dangerous heights to take these interviews you claim.. according to me it is BS... As a film maker you had a responsibility towards your viewers, especially those who are not from Kashmir and who want to know the real story, not just the tits and bits you showed.   Seriously wish with all the effort you put in, it was a true and unbiased picture of Kashmir, which sadly was not the case.  Yes it was tear filled and heart rendering interviews from the Muslim women and ex militants, but a part of my heart still longed to hear it also from the KP women and men, for which you would not have had to go to 'dangerous heights' because these guys are scattered everywhere!!!!


  1. I watched the movie for few minutes and when they starting talking about torture by Army I stopped. I have heard many brutal stories from people who were either in Army or faced the situation. In fact, there are so many horrific stories I have heard that if I think about it, I will be in depression for sometime.

    Well, I personally feel we are done with hearing the stories and feeling sad about it. Do something...Comfort and understand those who have witnessed so much...Talking doesn't serve any purpose...Doing surely does...

  2. One more of the likes of Arundhati Roy, Rakesh Mehra and other pseudo- secularists blaming India for the problem of Kashmiri's! Just see the reality of states like Pakistan and Bangladesh who were once part of India, are they any better today?

    I feel sorry for narrow minded religious fanatics who have made the regions of Hindukush, Gangdhar (Kandahar), Sivalik into dens of despair and disappointment not only for themselves but also for the next many generations to come,where once peace and harmony lived, its only gloom and agony now.

    Over to Arundhati;s and Ashwin Kumar's who have found a great new way to make a living by rightfully abusing the freedom of speech and liberty by India's own constitution!

  3. I have a Kashmiri friend who is a Pandit, and he told us, how they stayed in a refugee camp with NO HOME for 2 years!!

    Dunno if Ashwin Kumar is technically challenged, but yes if have started something, might as well do the whole thing!

    Firstly, the ex militants had the option of not going through this suffering and back out, whereas the Kashmiris pandit didnot!

    Secondly, I am tired of censor board banning thing, and the government keeping a check on the net.. Really what are we becoming into!!

    Well digged out info, I had no clue about this!

  4. Very well articulated!!!
    Just a one sided story ... and that too of those people who don't seem to have even a slightest of regret for what they have done.... I even pity Ashwin, seems yet another guy hungry for publicity.

  5. well.....whatever may be the claim by the producer/director but whenever such things are screened people behind it just forget or deliberately avoid to put the facts from both side.....may be bcoz they know well that once any one section of them start objecting on the content of the movie they get required publicity in the media......and getting publicity for better business is their sole idea irrespective of what the fact is......

    So its always better not t watch such movies.....moreover i agree with Saru Ainghal that "simply talking doesn't serve any purpose..."

  6. i did not know this part of it.
    the stories of torture and rape & displaced families never fail to move us and especially for people like me who have lived such cozy lives down here south who know nothing personally about the ground realities out there it is very disturbing

  7. Such pseudo secularists out for self promotion and instant fame ,should be given neither eyes nor ears.Read enough discussions about the film,want to protest by not watching it altogether.

  8. beautiful post. Noe I am dying to see this movie. I ahve a few Kashmiri friends and what I hear is heart breaking. your newest follower here and a regular visitor now. you can find me at http://purplechronicle.blogspot.com/

  9. @Saru Singhal very well said Saru..Doing is what matters now

  10. @Jenny exactly.. why would you want to telecast an incomplete story..u r so right about the option thing..and about the censor board lesser said the better

  11. @Ritz that comment coming from you.. i think i know how you feel..

  12. i have dear kashmiri friends too...very good post yar..

  13. @Irfanuddin yes me too think that it was a deliberate attempt not to mention both sides of the story....

  14. @Sujatha Sathya precisely what I was getting at here SuJu, when such a telecast is done on a national and international level..it was Ashwin's responsibility to have broadcasted both sides of the issue..not leave the audience with an incomplete story..

  15. @sharmila self promotion and instant fame...rightly said sharmila

  16. @Chirag Joshi u should if u get a chance, have posted the link on my fb page..not sure if it works even now

  17. @Kajal Welcome to SuKupedia :) :) thx for sharing ur link will visit ur page soon :)

  18. At least you remember the plight of Kashimiri Pandits. The successive governments in Delhi have been behaving as if there was no exodus of KPs. In fact it was initially alleged that KPs left on their own to give an impression to the world that they were forced out. One of my colleagues in was a Pandit who left Jammu. His wife lost a govt job.

  19. a friend of mine who is from kashmir told me that one of the reason govt doesnt do anything about it is that 'aid's' come from every part of the world to kashmir because its disputed. no one wants to change that. remember KPS GILL(the guy who stopped terrorism in punjab) asked to be transferred to kashmir, govt refused

  20. @Hariharan Valady Govt is just conveniently shifting stands on this issue sadly...

  21. @maniac.hunter yes I believe that too, they want it to remain as reason for their greed

  22. The part where you say that it seems incomplete - I think that was the whole point of the documentary. No documentary on Kashmir can be complete. There are just too many aspects. What Ashvin has done is to talk about something that is taboo in mainstream media. That takes courage especially with all the loony fringe groups of all colours with thin tolerance

    Also regarding the presentation, its my feeling that it was intentional. It makes you a part of the proceedings since you yourself could have shot this...

    I have also placed my points on my blog on the same topic...you can look at it if you want to see my complete opinion

  23. @Protik Basu I have already told that I commend his effort, but I cannot agree with him when he says he has projected Kashmir. Any projection of Kashmir is incomplete without the story of KPs, they are still a part of Kashmir. In your post you have said "variety of people", but in actual sense this variety was missing from the documentary. And yes I agree that it was banned because of the light in which the army was shown, which I think was nonsense. It should not have been banned, but I cannot support an incomplete projection.

  24. No Kashmiri Muslim raised a voice in protest when almost entire Kashmiri Pandits community was forcefully driven out of the valley... after murders, rapes and what not...

    And we, the other India, gave them tents to live and now their children are marrying others and the whole race is getting extinct...

    For the plight of Kashmiri Muslims, they are also victim of Pak sponsored terrorism. Only their method of treatment is different...

    All places where Armies are stationed for a long time, violations are reported. Our Army is still among the best.

  25. I have not seen this movie but I do recall watching a few discussion on it on some news channels. There was one on NDTV India where Gen Bakshi was all alone battling the idiots around him. The behaviour of the anchor Ravish absolutely sent me into rage that day and the words of Rahul Pandita who said (1) Kashmir Pandit's cleansing from Kashmir is not a Human Righst Violation, anchor Ravish did not feel he needed to question Rahul Pandita for this. (2) He said the Army wanted to be in Kashmir cos "they have made a business out of it". (3) When Gen Bakshi said that thousands of AK-47s have been recovered in the last 20 years by Army then Rahul Pandita failed to see the significance of this. No one in that studio was least bit sympathetic to Gen Bakshi's words even though he had direct combat experience of Kashmir.

    My point of recounting all this is that we are very naive. Do we really expect our biased media channels to give fair coverage of what happens in Kashmir? You may say that I am missing the point since the moot point here was the movie and not the media. But it is the media that feeds all these people. It is the media which programs the thinking process of all of us. The way the media shapes out opinion is immense. It decides what is to be drilled into our mind and what is to be slowly erased. How many discussion have we seen on our media channels dealing exclusively with Kshmiri Pandits' cleansing? This issue is given a peripheral presence only but the killing of a Kashmiri Muslim's during heavy protests and violence against Army is given thorough coverage.

    Excuse for a long post but I would summarize this by saying that the media has chosen not to explain the word "Collateral Damage" to the masses and instead keeps on dwelling on what the Kashmiri Muslims go through even though they themselves are mostly responsible for it.

    Btw, how many times have you heard the word Kashmiri Muslim? The word Kashmiri has become synonymous with the Muslims who live there, yet another clever case of playing with our memory.

    The movie you talk of would be yet another attempt to highlight what an average Kashmiri goes through but the 'Pandit" part would be sanitized. The people who watch it, esp the uninitiated ones would be deeply affected by it and would see Indian State as a tyrant and Kashmiri Muslims as innocent. Gradually, the "Kashmiri" part would be jettisoned and the final impression would be that of Tyrant Indian State oppressing the Innocents Muslims.

    Sorry for the long post.

  26. I have to disagree with your post. Instead of sitting and criticizing peoples efforts to spread awareness among the public, he actually went in the field and did something for those people. These stories that these people recite, are not just of ex-militants. Commoners in Kashmir too face these issues. The army and CRPF are extremely tyrannical in those areas. I am not well aware about the Kasmiri pandits issue but I'm sure that is also quite prominent. However, what he has depicted is as much a part of the problem in Kasmir as the matter with the Pandits. Instead of commending his Samaritarian efforts, you call his work bullshit. Every journey starts with a single step and that is exactly what he tried to do here. This is the problem with many Indians, we're always complaining, irrespective of what we get. It's high time we changed that. Also, directing a documentary is not that impossible a task, it would be very commendable if you yourself could highlight the plight of the Kashmiri Pandits for whom you feel so deeply for. People like me, which would be four-fifths of our population, are unaware of such happenings and are actually quite eager to learn of them. You would be bestowing your country with a much required act of chivalry.

  27. @yanni: welcome to Sukupedia :).. and no u don't have to be sorry for that long comment :) u r welcome to speak your mind here :)..

    @ LifeasIknowit: you can disagree with me my friend...if you read the post carefully I am not against the movie portraying the plight of Muslims & atrocities of the army... I am against calling it a movie based on 'Kashmir Issue' and not including the migrated Kashmiri Pandits in that movie.. but as you said you don't much about them ....

  28. @LifeAsIKnowIt

    Dear LifeAsIKnowIt:

    1. "The army and CRPF are extremely tyrannical in those areas"

    -- This is just what such movies end up propagating and this is just what is to be avoided. Sadly, you seem to be affected by it already.

    2. You are already convinced about Army's tyranny in Kashmir but know little about Kashmiri Pandit's plight. Now tell me, a documentary proclaiming to show the reality of Kashmiri is silent on the hitherto unknown life of Kashmiri Pandits and shows only half baked, handicapped reality and it is to be believed?

    3. You say that ...
    "what he has depicted is as much a part of the problem in Kasmir as the matter with the Pandits."

    -- I say that ...
    "The matter with the Pandits is as much a part of the problem in Kasmir as what he has depicted."

    Did you see how much different it sounds by swapping the two clauses? One of these clauses is shown to all while the other clause is obscure even to most Indians.

    4. "directing a documentary is not that impossible a task".

    -- Firstly, this is a hollow argument. If I say that RaOne was not that good a movie since its script was not developed to its potential then would you say that "Make a Ra-One yourself then?" I don't need to be an expert in some art or even need to do an encore in order to critically appraise something.

    Secondly, do you think making a documentary is as easy as going out with your camcorder to Corbett? Forget about the technicalities about sound recording and govt permits, a naive person with
    little political connections won't even get inside many villages in Kashmir (and in many parts of India). Locals would be suspicious of you if you don't have a native accomplice and even then you would have no idea who is hiding where. Even in Corbett you don't go with your camcorder to every bush hoping to spot a Tiger. A professional's work is often beyond an amateur.

    5. The final result of the propaganda these kind of movies spread is that the audience ends up brainwashed. They are like "Oh my god, Indian Govt, Indian Army and Indians are doing this to Kashmiris? They must be really bad people". Bigger problem is when normal Indians like me and you look at these documentaries with our guard down as if they were gospel. One of my friends had seen the movie SHAURYA in 2008 and had praised it saying it showed the real truth of Army in Kashmir. I saw that movie very late but when I did I could spot so many inaccuracies in it but by that time the damage was done and the audience of that movie might have already been affected by it. I urge you not to blindly appreciate everything served to you. The world is beautiful but some part of it is worse than our worst imaginations. And these dark corners sometimes are right in front of us, in the centre of our lives. The game is much more complex than we take it to be and there are many players playing it, some are visible while most remain invisible. The fact that 3 Lakh Indians are displaced and not much noise is made is shocking.

    6. Again sorry for a long comment. My final point is, the people of Kashmir (read Kashmiri Muslims) ought to be ready to pay the price. They live in a turmoil all the time. It was these people who made such a big conflict out of the land transfer deal of 2008 to Amarnath Shrine Board. If they get worked so much on such issues (hardly an issue TBH) then they should not complain afterwards over how they suffer when there is so much infiltration from Pak and terrorists keep coming in. Incidentally, many of these terrorists are Kashmiri Muslims. If a mosquito bites me then am I not going to smash all the mosquitoes I see in my room? COLLATERAL DAMAGE.

    Take Care.


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