Kashmir Files is atrocity propaganda movie: Journalists

New Delhi, March 15 (KMS): Bollywood director Vivek Agnihotri who is known for his anti-Muslim bigotry has raked a polarising debate on Kashmiri Pandits with his new film KashmirFiles.

The film is facing criticisms for making exaggerated claims on migration of Pandits from the Kashmir valley to exploit the events that occurred 32 years ago to provoke anti-Muslim sentiments in India and IIOJK.

Kashmiri Pandits are a numerically minority community who fled the Valley in early 90s on the incitation by the-then governor of Kashmir, Jagmohan.

Agnihotri’s film projects a few incidents of killings and migration of Pandits as genocide. The social media is overflowing with posts from users backing the controversial director even as many others countered his claims with facts.

Journalist Samrat Chaudhary called KashmirFiles an “atrocity propaganda movie”. He shared a photo of a page from the book of Prof Sumantra Bose on Kashmiri Pandits which claimed that only 32 members of the community were killed in the Kashmir valley. He asked where films on “genocide” of Bengali Hindus in Assam are.

To counter the claims made in the film, people are also sharing the information from an RTI response by IIOJK police in November 2021 which says 89 Pandits have been killed since 1990. Alt News editor Mohammad Zubair wrote on Twitter that the movie is weaponising the Pandit tragedy to “create hatred against the opposition & Muslim minorities”.

Video clips from theatres have also emerged showing fervent crowds during the screening of the film yelling violent slogans; “shoot the anti-nationals.” Reacting to one such video, a US based Kashmiri academic Mir juanaid said: “Anti-Kashmiri/anti-Muslim hate is the only commodity that sells in the Indian public market.”

The BJP-run Gujarat government, however, announced that the film screening in the state would be made tax free. Moreover, after the movie was released, Agnihotri, his actor wife Pallavi Josh and producer Abhishek Aggarwal met Prime Minister Modi who according to Abhishek had noble and appreciative words for the film.