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On Uncertain GroundDisplaced Kashmiri Pandits in Jammu and Kashmir$
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Ankur Datta

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199466771

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199466771.001.0001

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Making a Claim on the Nation

Making a Claim on the Nation

The Politics of Victimhood and Marginality among Kashmiri Pandits

(p.159) 6 Making a Claim on the Nation
On Uncertain Ground

Ankur Datta

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the attempts of Kashmiri Pandit migrants to claim the status of victims of violence. The Kashmiri Pandits represent themselves as Indian citizens who were forced to leave Kashmir as a result of their support of the Indian state. Hence as a community who have ‘suffered’ for their support of the Indian nation state in contrast to secessionist political activity in Kashmir, they make a claim on the Indian nation state for recognition and support. However, to understand the politics of victimhood, it is necessary to assess the repertoires and vocabularies of victimhood employed by the Pandits. By drawing upon testimonies of violence and displacement in 1990 and political mobilization efforts by Pandit organizations in the present, this chapter explores political claim-making as caught in a tension between being similar to other communities who faced grievous trauma and violence and then claiming that their experience is unique.

Keywords:   violence, victimhood, performative politics, power, nationalism, state

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