India has covered Kashmir’s main city with a complicated maze of barbed wire that cuts through neighborhoods and regularly changes layout to control its population as part of its crackdown in the region.
India’s parliament last week voted to cancel two articles in its constitution that guaranteed the state of Jammu and Kashmir’s right to make its own laws and prevent outsiders from buying property in the region.
The wire is accompanied with a curfew and an internet and phone blackout as well as armed police, steel barricades, drones, and helicopters.
One expert said the maze is designed to “psychologically break people and teach them that they’re not in control of their own bodies.” while Pakistan, which also claims Kashmir, accused India of “ethic cleansing.”
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India is controlling people in Kashmir during its unprecedented lockdown by using barricades, armed police, and an elaborate maze of razor wire that changes configuration several times a day.
The state’s main city, Srinagar, has now been covered with a maze of razor wire and steel barricades with authorities changing the entrance and exit locations multiple times a day, leaving residents confused, The Associated Press reported on Wednesday.
India last week cancelled two articles in its constitution that guaranteed the state of Jammu and Kashmir’s right to make its own laws and prevent outsiders from buying property in the region.
This was coupled with a curfew and a communications blackout that shut off internet and phone access.
The elaborate network has a one-way system that prevents people from returning home in the same direction that they first travelled through it. It cuts through neighborhoods and blocks some roads, the AP said.
Read more: India accused the BBC and Reuters of lying about large-scale protests in Kashmir, even though they were recorded on video
One resident, Zameer Ahmed, told the AP that the wire network is “so vast, so expansive.”
“The entire Srinagar city has been knitted in razor wire to seek our silence and obedience.”
The wire is accompanied by armed soldiers in riot gear, as well as helicopters patrolling overhead, the AP reported.
The city has a majority Muslim population, many of whom are concerned that India’s recent moves will see an influx of Hindus, altering the cultural and religious makeup of the city.
One resident told the AP that the system was the “smartest blockade” he had seen in the region over 30 years, compared to previous efforts by India. He said it was less violent than other efforts but still prevented people from voicing their opposition.
“If you must, they also allow you to venture out of home, yet they’ve throttled our voice by such a sophisticated blockade,” he said.
And another resident said: “They’ve changed the road map of our city, trying to make us like strangers in our own neighborhoods.”
Read more: People in Kashmir are struggling to find access to food and medical care under a communications blackout and strict lockdown
Saiba Varma, a researcher at the the University of California, San Diego, who …read more
Source:: Business Insider – Politics