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If you have been following events in the Kashmir Valley, you would have heard of massive crowds turning up at the funerals for the mourning. Hundreds of violent, passionate protestors get killed, thousands of mourners get injured after the funerals. But, not all mourners are sympathizers, many of them are actually informers of the Indian security forces, just like Koshur.
The more interesting question is why these funerals are allowed by New Delhi? The security forces and the J&K government are well aware of what is happening in the Valley i.e. glorifying the militants and attracting more youngsters to pick the guns, but why are such funerals allowed?
In the complicated jumble that is Kashmir in, funerals are the best place to get information from a variety of sources, whether through technical means or via humans who could be the police informers like Koshur.
But for an informer to be effective he has to be a trusted local. Somebody the militants don’t suspect someone who is seen as sympathetic to the militancy. Therefore one of the first things that a mukhbir must do on the killing of a militant is to mourn the death. He must be at the funeral with his eyes, and ears open so that proper intelligence can be gathered and shared with the security agencies.
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The biggest question which disturbs the people is what incentives do informers get by getting their own people killed in the valley?
As per EurAsian Times extensive research, many of the informers are genuinely against the militancy and want to see an end to the armed conflict but cannot speak or express openly; others could be the ones taking revenge against the militant or his immediate or extended family members for their wrongs actions or disputes; some are surrendered, disgruntled militants who work as informers for the security agencies; and the majority of people are those who lack employment, lack financial resources to support their families as the militancy has killed the local industry.
Its almost 30 years, and Kashmir’s local economy has been ruined and allying with the government and security forces is the easiest way to address their financial woes.
It is the “Koshur” translating to Kashmir people themselves who inform the security forces the precise location of the militants, their names, the villages they are from and the number of militants hiding, which leads to the CASO, the search operation, and eventual elimination of the militants. As the number of militants is increasing, so is the number of informers and so are the deaths in the valley.
With inputs from Omar Ahmed