Diasporic Identity

I Stand With Kashmir – what you need to know about the current situation

Before you read on, I want to ask you for a favour. Just one. Even if you only have 5 followers on social media or 5 contacts in your phone and 4 of those are your family members, please spread the news about Kashmir. This is a community that has suffered for 70 years: torture cases… Continue reading I Stand With Kashmir – what you need to know about the current situation

Diasporic Identity

A Little Piece of Heaven: our stay in A&JK

I must be going soft in my old age because my recent journey to Azad Kashmir had me crying over the smallest things! Please be prepared for lots of sentimental ramblings over the next few weeks: I plan to take full advantage of this most welcomed end to my writer's block. A week before our… Continue reading A Little Piece of Heaven: our stay in A&JK

Diasporic Identity

Articulating grief as a Muslim: what the New Zealand massacre teaches us

I have really struggled to find ways to express my feelings about what happened on March 15th. I know I'm not alone. I write this with a heavy heart and reluctant hands, I write this feeling like the least qualified, least educated, and least politically aware person out there. I write knowing it has been… Continue reading Articulating grief as a Muslim: what the New Zealand massacre teaches us

Diasporic Identity, Original Writing

I See Kashmir Burning (Poem)

What price for those verdant valleys which my mothers traversed for fire logs What price for those babbling brooks that watered cattle and crops for centuries What price for the ever-fertile soil, the one they say delivers gold What price for the land my grandfathers walked away from with moist eyes, tight lips, even harder… Continue reading I See Kashmir Burning (Poem)

Diasporic Identity

I’m an oppressed Muslim woman?

Earlier this week it was International Women's Day and like all other days - Mother's day, Father's day, Independence day - it was difficult to acknowledge the day let alone engage in any discussions. You see, my problem isn't with the day nor with those who celebrate it, my problem is with the fight. Commemorative… Continue reading I’m an oppressed Muslim woman?

Diasporic Identity

Homeless daughters of a hybrid diaspora

The cursor blinks expectantly. You wonder, shall I begin with I ‘returned’ home or I’ve been 'away’ from home? At the airport, we try muting our pain through feeble consolations. You will be back next summer, it’s just a year. No. I have holidays in January.   That's good… I'll be back before you know… Continue reading Homeless daughters of a hybrid diaspora

Diasporic Identity

Finding resonance in Iqbal’s poetry

It's 2009. I am Kashmiri but I've never heard of Dr Allama Iqbal. I've been taught daughters are lesser than sons, that choice in marriage is rebellion, and honour upheld solely through submission. But things that would've built my character, intellect or faith were not deemed important...so, I've never heard of Iqbal. Being the product… Continue reading Finding resonance in Iqbal’s poetry

Diasporic Identity

The Oldham Riots: 15 years on

Let me just get this out there: it's a really bad idea to complete a dissertation about your hometown whilst preparing to leave. It's even worse if you already harbour a love/hate relationship with the place! I spent the summer reading about the 2001 Oldham riots which, until now, were fuzzy recollections of newspaper stills… Continue reading The Oldham Riots: 15 years on