Academics and activists condemn Indian diplomat’s call for replicating Israeli model in Kashmir

The remarks by the consul general of India in New York, Sandeep Chakravorty, come at a time when there is growing ideological and political convergence between the Hindutva regime in India and the Zionist regime in Israel

December 01, 2019 by BDS India
It's been over a 100 days since a political crackdown was imposed on the people of Kashmir.

In a private event held in New York City on Saturday, 23rd November, the consul general of India in New York, Sandeep Chakravorty, made the outrageous remarks of following Israel’s model in Kashmir, in the context of return of Kashmiri Pandits [members of the Hindu Brahmin community who were forced to leave the State in the late 80s due to religious violence]. While he did not specify whether he is referring to Israel as such or the settlements in the West Bank, in his capacity as an Indian diplomat, Mr Chakravorty advocated for Israel’s policies i.e. apartheid, war crimes and ethnic cleansing to be implemented in Kashmir. Further, in his address, he also said that “Kashmiri culture is Indian culture is Hindu culture..”. The address was part of a private meeting between the Kashmiri Pandit diaspora community and Vivek Agnihotri, a film director whose brazen propaganda contributed to the coinage of the myth of ‘Urban Naxals’, a term now regularly used to persecute activists and human rights defenders in India.

Sandeep Chakravorty
Sandeep Chakravorty. Photo: Deccan Herald

While the government pretended that the abrogation of Article 370 and the subsequent crackdown in Kashmir, entering its fourth month now, was for bringing ‘development’ to Kashmir, Mr Chakravorty has inadvertently revealed the Hindu nationalist core behind this decision. It is deplorable that pain and trauma of the Kashmiri Pandit community is being weaponized for the communal agenda of the regime. It is further evident that the establishment has been permeated with its ideology, within India and outside.

The revocation of Article 370 and 35(A) was right from the beginning called out for being inspired by Israel’s settlement policy by progressive and secular voices. For the past five years, India has been the biggest importer of Israeli arms, deals that go up to $1 billion every year. Additionally, Indian companies are entering into joint ventures with Israeli weapons companies to produce drones and rifles. Israeli army delegations have visited Kashmir and Indian Police Services trainees are sent to Israel for a week as part of their program. The security cooperation between the two is elaborate and inevitably that means exchange of methods and tactics. Most recently, activists and lawyers were revealed to have been targeted by Israeli spyware Pegasus. The proposed Citizenship Amendment Bill seeks to confer ‘right of return’ to non-Muslims from India’s neighboring countries, just like Israel does to Jewish people across the world. There is an ideological collaboration of Hindutva and Zionism behind these arms deals and security cooperation.

The weapons and tactics that India receives from Israel are ‘field-tested’ on Palestinians. India’s arms purchases directly finance Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territories. Earlier this month, Israel killed 34 people in Gaza in air strikes, including a family of 8. Israel’s apartheid, occupation and colonialism derives its impunity from the support it receives from states like India. Now, more than ever, it is incumbent upon us to combine our struggle for democracy and secularism with that of Palestinian liberation. By calling for a military embargo on Israel, we also call for ending the ties that are facilitating the current siege and crackdown in Kashmir. That will be an effective way to truly stop the implementation of the Israeli model in Kashmir.

Endorsed:

  1. Achin Vanaik, Retd. Professor of International Relations, University of Delhi
  2. Pamela Philipose, Senior Journalist
  3. Githa Hariharan, Writer and Managing Trustee, Indian Writers Forum
  4. Tapan Bose, Filmmaker and Human Rights defender
  5. Dipankar Bhattacharya, General Secretary, CPIML Liberation
  6. Kavita Krishnan, Secretary, AIPWA
  7. Nandita Narain, Associate Professor, St Stephen’s College, Delhi
  8. Apoorvanand, Professor, Department of Hindi, Delhi University
  9. Nivedita Menon, JNU
  10. Nuzhat Kazmi, Professor, Faculty of Fine Art, Jamia Millia Islamia
  11. Vivan Sundaram, Artist
  12. Sukrita Lahiri, PhD Scholar, JNU
  13. Sukla Sen, Peace Activist, Mumbai
  14. Marcy Newman, author of The Politics of Teaching Palestine to Americans.
  15. Imrana Qadeer, CSD, Delhi
  16. Uma V Chandru, Anthropologist and Rights Activist
  17. Anand Patwardhan, Filmmaker
  18. Gautam Mody, General Secretary, New Trade Unions Initiative
  19. Sudhanva Deshpande, Theatre Artist and Publisher
  20. Aparna Sundar, Independent Researchers, Toronto
  21. Dean Accardi, Assistant Professor of History, Connecticut College, USA
  22. Raja Qaiser Ahmad, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan
  23. Binish Ahmed, Ph.D. candidate, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada
  24. Omer Aijazi, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Toronto, Canada
  25. Dibyesh Anand, Professor of International Relations, University of Westminster, UK
  26. Mirza Saaib Beg, Lawyer, London, UK
  27. Mona Bhan, Associate Professor of Anthropology and the Ford Maxwell Professor of South Asian Studies, Syracuse University, USA
  28. Emma Brännlund, Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Relations, University of the West of England (UWE Bristol), UK
  29. Angana Chatterji, Feminist Scholar, University of California, Berkeley
  30. Farhan Mujahid Chak, Associate Professor, Qatar University, Qatar
  31. Huma Dar, Adjunct Professor, California College of Arts, USA
  32. Haley Duschinski, Associate Professor, Ohio University, USA
  33. Iffat Fatima, Filmmaker, India
  34. Javaid Hayat Khan, Ph. D. Independent Researcher and Analyst, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  35. Serena Hussain, Associate professor, Coventry University, UK
  36. Shrimoyee Nandini Ghosh, Lawyer and Legal Researcher, India
  37. Mohamad Junaid, Assistant Professor, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, USA
  38. Hafsa Kanjwal, Assistant Professor of History, Lafayette College, USA
  39. Nitasha Kaul, Associate Professor, University of Westminster, UK
  40. Suvir Kaul, A.M. Rosenthal Professor, Department of English, University of Pennsylvania, USA
  41. Fozia Nazir Lone, Associate Professor of International Law, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  42. Laura Lucia Notaro, Consultant, Sustainable Development, Milan, Italy
  43. Inshah Malik, Assistant Professor, Kardan University, Kabul, Afghanistan
  44. Deepti Misri, Associate Professor, University of Colorado, Boulder, USA
  45. Preetika Nanda, Research Scholar, India
  46. Immad Nazir, Research Scholar, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany
  47. Goldie Osuri, Associate Professor, University of Warwick, UK
  48. Idrisa Pandit, Independent Scholar, Waterloo, Canada
  49. Samina Raja, Professor, University of Buffalo, USA
  50. Mehroosh Tak. Lecturer, Royal Veterinary College, London, UK
  51. Nishita Trisal, PhD Candidate, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA
  52. Saiba Varma, Assistant Professor, University of California, San Diego, USA
  53. Ather Zia, Assistant Professor, University of Northern Colorado, USA
  54. Gautam Navlakha, PUDR and Newsclick
  55. Sunaina Maira, Professor, Asian American Studies, UC Davis and a founding organizer of the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (USACBI)
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