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The Kashmir Files, Fake v/s Fact

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The Kashmir Files, a film directed by Vivek Agnihotri is based on the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits that took place in 1990 from Kashmir valley. The film strongly condemns the word ‘Exodus’ and replaces it with ‘Genocide’. The movie has triggered a heated debate on social media and has stirred emotions among the audience. The film has added up the hate speech against Muslims who are already subjected to violence and vilification campaigns in recent years.

Many historians, commentators and prominent voices from bureaucracy and Kashmiri Pandits have disputed the claims made in the film.

In this report, we are examining how content in the film and debate on social media was misled intentionally or unintentionally.

Fact checks

Claim 1

As per Mithun Chakraborty who is playing the role of IAS officer Brahma Dutt, 5 Lakh Kashmiri Pandits were killed and banished from the valley.

Screen Shot of the movie The Kashmir Files

Fact Check

According to RTI filed P. P Kapoor 1.5 Lakh people were migrated from Kashmir and 88% among them were Hindus due to violence and threat that occurred in the valley.

As per the report of Hindu, 219 Kashmiri Pandits were killed and 24000 families of Pandits migrated from the valley.

The Hindu

Conclusion: hence proving that there are records of only 1.5 lakh migrants who left the Kashmir Valley. Although 88% were Hindus no such data tally to the big number of 5 lakh.

Claim 2

In the second scene, Darshan Pandit who played Krishna Pandit in the movie says that only Pakistani militants killed the people during the exodus in 1990.

Screen Shot of the movie The Kashmir Files

Fact Check

In 1990, 4 IAF officials were also allegedly killed by Yasin Malik and others. He is a Kashmiri Separatist and President of the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front. As per the charge sheet, on 25th January 1990, Yasin Malik opened fire on IAF personnel on the outskirt of Srinagar leaving several injured on the street.

A report of The Print says, CBI gathered shreds of evidence and filed a case against Yasin Malik in the TADA court of Jammu & Kashmir. Media houses like India Today, NDTV, Times of India have also covered the ongoing case file against him for allegedly killing IAF officers.

Conclusion: The claim that only Pakistani militants were behind the Kashmir insurgency is misleading.

Claim 3

In a scene, Kashmiri Pandits along with other refugees are living in camps on the outskirt of Jammu complains about the necessity provided to them. A refugee asked the home minister, why are we only provided by cash amount of Rs 600 for our living and nothing more.

Screen Shot of the movie The Kashmir Files

Fact Check

As per the data of Ministries of Home Affairs, cash of Rs 250/family were given along with the facility of free rations during the exodus. The facilities were revised time and again. 62000 migrants were registered from Kashmir in the country and currently, the government is providing the cash of 2500 per head to the family members including discounts on ration. The government also provided two-room tenements in Purkhoo, Muthi, Nagrota in the Jammu.

PDF of Ministries of Home Affairs

Conclusion: No doubt the claim is misleading since during the exodus, the central government did not provide any security but the state government of Jammu and Kashmir provided facilities to most of the registered families for starting a new life.

 Claim 4

Krishna Pandit comes back to Kashmir and meets Farooq Malik (Villain) as advised by his professor Radhika Mellon. While having a conversation, Krishna accused Farooq Malik Bita of killing 1000 families during the exodus in 1990.

Screen Shot of the movie The Kashmir Files

Fact Check

According to the article in the Economic Times, Kashmir Pandit Organisation claimed that at least 399 Pandits were killed during the exodus in 1990 and 650 in later 20 years.

Economic Times

 

A PDF of Kashmir Scholars disputes the claim of Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti, an organisation working for Kashmir Pandit that 357 were killed during the exodus. Government data of The National Humans Right Commission quoted the number of 219.

Conclusion: Hence the claim of 1000 families being killed is misleading as no credible data source verify this.

Claim 5

During a scene where Krishna Pandit and Farooq Malik are having a conversation, Krishna claimed that only 800 Kashmiri Pandits are left in the valley of Kashmir after the exodus. While answering Krishna, Farooq said that 10,000 Kashmiri Pandits are living in the valley.

Screen Shot of the movie The Kashmir Files

Fact Check

According to the Government of Jammu & Kashmir, 808 families consisting of 3445 people are still living in Kashmir in the year 2010. Media houses like ANI, Business Standard and The Eurasian Times have also covered the news.

Conclusion: Hence both claims of 800 Kashmiri Pandit families or 10,000 Pandits presently living in Kashmir are factually wrong.

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