Introduction to Blog

I launched the website and the Blog after having spoken to government officials, political analysts and security experts specializing in South Asian affairs from three continents. The feedback was uniformly consistent. The bottom line is that when Kashmiris are suffering and the world has its own set of priorities, we need to find ways to help each other. We must be realistic, go beyond polemics and demagoguery, and propose innovative ideas that will bring peace, justice and prosperity in all of Jammu and Kashmir.

The author had two reasons to create this blog. First, it was to address the question that was being asked repeatedly, especially, by journalists and other observers in the U.S., U.K., and Canada, inquiring whether the Kashmiri society was concerned about social, cultural and environmental challenges in the valley given that only political upheaval and violence were reported or highlighted by media.

Second, the author has covered the entire spectrum of societal issues and challenges facing Kashmiri people over an 8-year period with the exception of politics given that politics gets all the exposure at the expense of REAL CHALLENGES that will likely result in irreversible degradation in the quality of life and the standard of living for future generations of Kashmiris to come.

The author stopped adding additional material to the Blog once it was felt that most, if not all, concerns, challenges and issues facing the Kashmiri society are cataloged in the Blog. There are over 1900 entries in the Blog and most commentaries include short biographical sketches of authors to bring readers close to the essence of Kashmir. Unfortunately, the 8-year assessment also indicates that neither Kashmiri civil society, nor intellectuals or political leadership have any inclination or enthusiasm in pursuing issues that do not coincide with their vested political agendas. What it means for the future of Kashmiri children and their children is unfathomable. But the evidence is all laid out.

This Blog is a reality check on Kashmir. It is a historical record of how Kashmir lost its way.

Vijay Sazawal, Ph.D.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

"I am a Dreamer"

Nida returns briefly from Dubai to her hometown (Srinagar) and makes a statement with poetic grace and eloquence

(Ms. Nida Rafiq Shiekh, 24, was born in Srinagar. She passed her Matriculation from the Presentation Convent High School and completed her 12th grade from the Mallinson Girls High School, both with distinction. She graduated from the Women's College, Srinagar, and completed a Master's degree in mass communications from the Media Education Research Centre (MERC) of the University of Kashmir. She is a free lance writer who likes writing about the Kashmir issue and other topics like communal violence that have torn apart the Kashmiri society with tragic consequences. She also loves reading, and plans to make serious documentary films some day. She presently lives in Dubai.)

I am a little girl and
I am a dreamer
I dream of barbies
I dream of candies
I dream of no homeworks
I dream of fun.

I am a teenager and
I am a dreamer
I dream of choclates
I dream of flowers
I dream of rain
I dream of love.

I am a spinster and
I am a dreamer
I dream of wealth
I dream of fame
I dream of wedding
I dream of success.

I am married and
I am a dreamer
I dream of peace
I dream of affection
I dream of family
I dream of happiness.

I am old now but
I am still a dreamer
I dream of childhood
I dream of adolescence
I dream of spinsterhood
I dream of life.

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