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India Further Militarizes the Most Militarized Zone in the World

On 17th June, India further augmented its military presence in Kashmir with the bringing in of 85 new military squads. The military official stated that the increased militarization is being done to ensure safety for Indian Hindu pilgrims during the Amarnath Yatra.

India has used Amarnath Yatra as a stick with which to beat Kashmiri Muslims. During the Yatra last year, India heavily increased military checkpoints, forced Kashmiri Muslim shopkeepers to close down their shops, denied them the right to access roads and highways, and stopped the Muslim fruit growers from using the main Srinagar-Jammu highway to transport their fruits for trade.

While Muslim religious practices continue to be curtailed by India, with Eid congregations being disallowed recently, in the name of “public order” and “security”, Hindu pilgrimages continue to receive full-fledged state support even at the expense of the local population.

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