On 22nd March, a freelance journalist, Irfan Mehraj, in Indian-occupied Kashmir was arrested by the…
UN office in Kashmir among properties on so-called encroachment list
On 21st January, in a report by The Kashmir Walla, it was revealed that the United Nations Military Observer Group properties in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) located in Srinagar is part of the encroaching properties list issued by the state. In the documents accessed by The Kashmir Walla, the state has asserted that the UN group is using what is ‘state land’. It is feared that the state will use the narrative of encroachment to either intimidate, or at worst dismantle the UN offices in Srinagar, which are one of the last symbols of the unfulfilled promise of self-determination that was made to the Kashmiris.
The presence of the UN offices in Srinagar serves as a reminder of the disputed nature of the territory of Jammu and Kashmir, and challenges India’s claim of Kashmir being its integral part. The narrative of encroachment has been used to deprive many pro-freedom Kashmiris of their land and properties, and many houses of pro-freedom Kashmiris have been destroyed using the same pretext.
Indian state has, in the Srinagar district of Kashmir, listed a total of 6926 patches of land as ‘state land’ that has to be retrieved from so-called encroachers, it just so happens that these encroachers happen to be people or institutions that are in opposition or dissent against the ruling Hindu nationalist regime.