Kashmir Lawmaker Parades His Herd, Exhibiting Rights of Kashmiris

Shakir Mir

SRINAGAR

Er Rashid along with his supporters during his 'herd protest'. (Photos: Bilal Bahadur/KL)
Er Rashid along with his supporters during his ‘herd protest’. (Photos: Bilal Bahadur/KL)

Er Rashid threw up a laughter chaos on the streets of Srinagar Thursday morning after parading cows, mules, dogs and horses ostensibly to demonstrate how animals have more rights and security in India than Kashmiris.

The maverick legislator led a crowd of protesters herding the animals fixed with placards reading: ‘I am goat of Mahatma Gandhi. I am more secure than Kashmiris.’

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Traffic plying through the Residency road, where the novel march was taken out, came to a grinding halt. “We are under orders to stop the movement of public transport under this route,” a traffic policeman told Kashmir Life.

The police men who assembled around the marchers couldn’t hide their laughter as one of the protesters held a dog aloft, shouting slogans against the present dispensation.

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“This protest is to remind people that there are more rights to animals than Kashmiri’s in India,” Rashid told media. “We know how killers of Gowhar are roaming freely. Yesterday, it came to fore that an army man has kidnapped civilians in Machil and there are countless other examples to illustrate how India does not respects human life in Kashmir,” he said.

Rashid said that by contrast, animals are more respected across India. “People in India kill you for eating cows,” he said. “Today on the World Human Rights day, we take out this protest to let the government know how it is neglecting the human rights of Kashmiris.”

When the march reached near the Police Station Kothi Bagh, the cops fanned out, forming a barrier to thwart the marchers from reaching Press Colony.

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Chaotic scenes erupted outside the police station as public turned up in large numbers to steal a glimpse of this unique method of protest. Motorists stopped to watch the scenes in amazement.

Policemen dragged the marchers along with the animals into the police station. “I can’t stop laughing over this,” said Akhtar, a trader at Residency Road. “Will police slap PSA against these animals too?”

Apart from the lawmaker and his supporters, police confirmed they have a custody of a cow, a horse and a goat.

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