The colonial narratives of postcolonial states: India in Kashmir
(University of Westminster)
Paper short abstract:
The paper will argue that Indian rule over Kashmir is best understood as a colonial occupation.
Paper long abstract:
Colonialism and colonisation involve systemic and structural dominance and subservience, asymmetrical relations between the coloniser and the colonised, political rule by a foreign power, control over narrative through which the rule is perceived and experienced, economic exploitation, militarisation, differential value of lives, development as a means of control, cultural transformation, denial of rights, surveillance, and everyday epistemic and corporeal violence. I would argue that all these aspects of colonialism are evident when we look at Indian rule over Kashmiris. Yet, scholars have tended to focus mostly on Kashmir issue as a dispute between India and Pakistan. The dominant territorial conflict lens that denies political agency to Kashmiris while valorising and reifying the existing nation-states elides the question of how the conflict is experienced by Kashmiris.
Liberating Kashmir from the 'South Asian' past and identity