PoK: Sensitivity of oppressor and media of oppressed

pok sensitivity of oppressor and media of oppressed – The News Mill

ANI Photo | PoK: Sensitivity of oppressor and media of oppressed

Once colonised, the oppressor cannot maintain its domination and control over the colonised without demonisation the values, and cultural narratives of the oppressed and creating, by instilling force and fear among the subjugated, a cultural hegemony of the colonist as a ‘superior’ being.
The print and digital media of the coloniser, the master, is also sensitised according to the demands of the interests of the oppressor: the coloniser. This is formally achieved through a constructed process of generalization of the oppressed, the colonised, people of being of a lesser deity.
Therefore, the colonised is depicted in literature, art, poetry, newsreels and through cinematic representation as a people of savage instincts, low morals, the criminal mind, drug users, rapists and thieves.
Allow me to present a recent example of the process of demonisation of an oppressed nation by its colonist master race in Pakistan.
The demonisation of the colonial subject in Pakistan was manifested in the Punjab university in Lahore where Baloch students are treated as less civilized beings compared to their Punjabi colleagues.
On October 21, 2022, a Pakistani (Punjabi) journalist and blogger Rizwan Razi Dada tweeted the following: “students from other provinces coming into the Punjab universities have become a big problem.”
In his tweet, Rizwan continued: “the students (are) the reason for all issues including rape cases and threatening vice-chancellors and sit-ins, students (from Balochistan and Khyber Paktoonkhawa) came to Punjab not to study but hooliganism. Pathans & Baloch students are invaders in Punjab. They aren’t fit for the study. They can only fix trucks. They need to be civilized”.
Rizwan is part of the Punjabi nation that rules over Pakistan through its Punjabi-dominated military. Both Balochistan and Pashtuns are labelled as ‘invaders, hooligans and savages’.
It is the same case when it comes to the oppressor’s narrative regarding the cultural practices of the colonised people of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan (PoK, PoGB).
Colonised people of PoK-GB are commonly referred to as untrustworthy. In Punjab, a saying goes that if your path is crossed by a snake and a Kashmiri, let the snake go but kill the Kashmiri. My people are taunted to be cowards, and someone who could only be good enough as domestic servants, rickshaw drivers, kitchen potters, manual labour and door keepers etc.
It is the effect of decades of mind engineering of the colonised people that a social stratum among the colonised people of PoK-GB emerged with the desire to assimilate into the coloniser’s culture.
The colonised entity of this social strata (falsely) believes itself to be equal to the oppressor. This is why they demonstrate their hate toward their own people and loathe the fact that they once were related to them.

They do everything in its power to erase any sign or symbol that could even vaguely relate to the bulk of the ‘savage’ colonised people.
He joined the oppressor and acted as a tool to facilitate the oppressors’ hold, control and rule. But he was never accepted as one of them by the coloniser (Pakistani/Punjabi) and this infrequently brought the coloniser and the upper stratum of the colonised into conflict.
The upper stratum of PoK-GB’s colonised people dresses like their masters (Shalwar Qameez and Sherwani). They speak the same tongue (Urdu), praise the literary icons (Allama Iqbal) and show admiration for political icons (Muhammed Ali Jinnah/Liaquat Ali Khan) who belong to the realm of the colonial master race’s cultural narrative. This upper social stratum of PoK-GB never fails to present themselves, to both the coloniser and the colonised, as the defenders of the values of the Islamic state of Pakistan and Jinnah’s two-nation theory.
In doing so they have not only exposed themselves as collaborators in the eyes of the larger population but also got themselves rejected as someone who could free the colonised people of their suffering caused by the occupation of an alien invader.
It is at this stage that a new kind of resistance has begun to emerge against both the coloniser and the upper stratum of the colonised people of PoK-GB.
However, unless this is a new form of struggle, which currently is limited to economic demands from the colonist mostly, helps to elevate the political consciousness of the oppressed people, (who is intellectually hibernating in the cosy dungeons of haplessness and misfortune), the process of reclaiming the dignity of the oppressed as a human being cannot be realised. And without this realisation, the link between the struggle for freeing ourselves from Pakistani occupation and reuniting with India cannot be formally established.
Then again, until the realisation of an individual’s dignity is not transformed into a universal realisation of the general colonised populace of PoK-GB, the process of freedom of the mind from the clutches of the oppressor’s cultural hegemony cannot bear any significant fruit.
Unless the realisation of self-dignity becomes part of the general psychology of the broader population of PoK-GB, the birth of self-belief that leads to combat with the occupier is not going to manifest.
In conclusion, in 2023 we are supposed to live in a society of equality. In education, health and employment. The standard bearer should be merit, not ethnicity or religion. But the reality is that there are still people living under oppression in PoK-GB and labelled and not given the opportunity to improve their lives.
In order to fight and change the current order we as a people will have to work on changing the mindset and perception of both the dominant cultural (Islamic) mindset and the misperception of history.
In today’s day and age for this to happen the role of social media is of utmost importance. The creation of the media of the oppressed such as Radio Himalaya News or the weekly online news bulletin such as ’22 October’ is therefore of paramount importance.
We reach the next stage in our struggle for the liberation of PoK-GB by October 22. It is a deadline issued by Tehreek e Itefaq e Rai (Movement for Consensus) for the Pakistan army to withdraw from PoK-GB.
Whether by October 22 we as an oppressed nation become able to instil the realisation in our individuals regarding one’s self-dignity and he/she is able to recover his/her lost prideful sensitivity and whether they become able to recognise the truthful version of the history of PoK-GB, and whether they become able to transform the vision and the desire of freedom into the universal will of our population, this and only this factor will determine the outcome of our October 22 course of action.
The author of this opinion article is Dr Amjad Ayub Mirza, who is an author and a human rights activist from Mirpur in PoK. He currently lives in exile in the UK. (ANI)

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