After failing to receive the proper citizenship documents from the Indian government, more than 350 women who claim to be married to Indian Kashmiris are now protesting every month demanding that the authorities send them home.
Hundreds of women who claim to be Pakistanis married to Kashmiris in India say they want to return to their home country.
One of them is Saira Javid, 43, who says her biggest regret in life is that she could not attend the funeral of her father Abdul Latif who died in September 2019 in Karachi, Pakistan. As tears well up in her eyes, Saira says she wished she’d never married an Indian Kashmiri.
She explains that moved from Karachi to the highly militarised town of Kupwara in 2011. She was abandoned by her husband Javid Ahmad a few years after getting hitched and having four children – life has since become like a prison. She claims her constant pleas to the Indian authorities to be sent back to Pakistan fall on deaf ears. Her only respite from the misery is the occasional glimpse of her hometown via stutteringly slow internet video calls with relatives in Karachi.
Kashmir has been a bone of contention between India and Pakistan since 1947 when Pakistan was established. Since the early 1990s, thousands of young people like her husband Javid crossed illegally into Pakistan to receive armed training to support the anti-Indian insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir. While in Pakistan, several