Shortage of food prevails as curfew in Indian-held Kashmir continues


A growing shortage of food and dairy items in Indian-held Kashmir is occurring as curfew continued to remain enforced in Handwara and Kupwara for the fifth consecutive day on Monday, reported Kashmir Media Service.

Many residents told media persons over phone from both the towns that people were running short of essential supplies including ration, baby milk, LPG and medicines.

The authorities had imposed strict curfew in Handwara and Kupwara after killing of five civilians including a woman in firing by Indian troops in the areas.

Due to restrictions people don’t have access to ration depots, hospitals and medical shops.

“My 19-day-old son is completely dependent on baby food but am not able to get it for him,” said Inayatullah.

Sulaiman Mir of Mawar Langate said he managed to reach Handwara town thrice to get medicine for his ailing sister but due to continuous closure of the pharmacies in the curfew-hit town he had to return empty-handed.

Fayaz Ahmad Malik of Kupwara said they are facing tough times for the want of fresh vegetables and other essential food items.

“Our children are going without milk and vital vaccines while the sick are not able to get medicines which is a matter of serious concern,” said Javed Ahmad, a local from Bagatpora Handwara.

Anti-India sentiment runs deep among the mostly Muslim population of Kashmir, and human rights groups have long accused the Indian military of using rape and sexual molestation to oppress the local population.

Kashmir has been split between Indian and Pakistani control since the British colonialists left in 1947, but is claimed in full by both countries.

Kashmiri groups have been fighting since 1989 for independence from India or the Indian portion’s merger with Pakistan. More than 68,000 people, most of them civilians, have been killed in the armed uprising and subsequent Indian crackdown.

Read more: In Indian-held Kashmir, ‘fearless mobs’ help militants escape