Dear Sir, Do you love Kashmiri apples?

Dear Sir,

Greetings! Hope you are enjoying the monsoon flurry sweeping across the North-India. I can see your Facebook posts about the beautiful rainbows and torrential rains. And how can I forget that as the season of the great Dashairi might be over, your plates are still full with the delicious Chausa and Langra. You Sir! I must say are having a wonderful time and you are without doubt the true inheritor of that great legacy – of the Mango-Wine-Loving-Secular-Modernist Poet-Mirza Assadaullah Khan Ghalib. But Sir, Isn’t there something missing in your plate this monsoon rather this late summer? I know you have many other varieties around you – the American, the Kullu wala, the Kangra Wala etc. etc., but don’t you miss the red and ripe Kashmiri apple? Oh! You do? How great! In that case you will also know why you haven’t yet seen Kashmiri apple in Dilli or other parts of North India? I am sorry! I am such an idiot. Of course you know everything about everything – given the love you have for Prime Time.

But I know how much you miss this damned Kashmiri apple, like you miss so many things from Kashmir – the snow peaked mountains, the famous dal lake, the wild flowers, the golden tulips, the lush and vast Gulmarg and Pahalagam and not to forget the abode of Baba barfani – the Amarnath Cave. You know only fools can’t see the love Indians like you have for Kashmir. I mean you love every bit of it. Isn’t it your love, which makes you call Kashmir with different names – Atoot ang, ‘crown of India’, ‘Switzerland of India’ etc. etc. Forgive these Kashmiri fools who never understood your love for Kashmir. You know what they say? They say, ‘Indians love the land i.e. Kashmir and not the people of Kashmir’. I mean can this be an argument? Even your post-colonial thinkers can rip this argument apart, not to mention the liberals or the intellectual giants of Indian right!

I feel so sorry that you have to be separated from your loved Kashmiri apple by these few misguided, brainwashed youths. Truly I apologize on their behalf! You know the rot is so much that even the big traders who send you the juicy apples from Kashmir have said in a press statement a couple of days back that they are ready to sacrifice their business for the ongoing Kashmiri movement. They have completely altered my understanding of class conflict – the one I so hardly had learned from my Indian professors. I mean who suffers losses for a movement. One doesn’t have to go too far. But never ever did we see such passion, such involvement… Sorry I mean such fanaticism! Even Gandhian movements of non-cooperation, civil disobedience never saw such gatherings where every man, woman, children, old were on the streets. Let me tell you the more perverse side of this movement. Not only have women been at the front of the strikes, protests and stone-pelting, but the slogan of Ragda Ragda as the popuar saying goes came from a transgender. Such regression, such perversion! My God! Thankfully Gandhi’s, Nehru’s, Tilak’s, Savarkar’s were such honorable men they never allowed women to independently lead movements. I mean won’t you agree ‘Men should always lead and women should follow’. Such noble principles you had. Though some ‘anti-nationals’ within you are trying very hard to destroy your great civilizational achievements – the laws of Manu to be precise. Beware of them.

And with all this perversion and with this fanaticism, Kashmiris have the audacity to claim that Indians don’t support them. I mean what if Kashmir is closed for 30 days now? What if 58 people have died and 6000 injured? What if around 100 Kashmiris have lost their eyes forever? Isn’t it what everyone who ever sort their freedom and dignity have gone through? History is a witness! No? But most important sir, you are a man of culture and different tastes. Why will you write about Kashmir when you could endlessly write and discuss Ghalib’s poetry – vo batlayein to hum batlayein kya… I mean is it being less radical when you can sing symphonies of Marx, Derrida, Butler and Foucault in your AC seminar rooms? These ignorant fools won’t understand the historic role that has been assigned to you. It is not to organize protests or write about ‘violence in Kashmir’, but to discuss and write about the epistemic-violence and the multiple subjectivities of the post-colonial, post-industrial societies via an ontological and phenomenological analysis mediated by the multiple circuits of power, multiple subjectivities and the multiple fractures within the discourse of a post-nation state through a discourse analysis of Kanti Shah’s movies. I mean ufff! Do you even think that these laymen and women of Kashmir can even understand the burden history has put on your shoulders – condensed in this one sentence?

At last my humble request sir will be to not get bogged down either by your separation from the Kashmiri apple nor by the call of your conscience. Kashmiris as of now have stopped requesting you, as they have understood your ‘historic role’. Your ever increasing army in Kashmir will make sure that you will get apples as soon as possible. But how long they can keep bringing you the famed Kashmiri apple, I am not very sure.

Wishing you more cups of Nationalist drinks derived by squeezing Kashmiri apples.

Your most sincere well-wisher,

Sheikh Chilli

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Amit Sheikh Chilli Written by:

Amit Sheikh Chilli aka Amit Kumar is a Doctoral student at the Department of History, University of Delhi. He considers himself a amateur fiction writer by compulsion and a passionate history researcher by choice.

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