The national media of Turkey in an unprecedented manner attacked the Indian government for spreading Hindu-Nationalism in Kashmir in the name of the Amarnath Yatra. The Turkish media has accused the Indian government of subduing Kashmir with religious tourism.
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TRT World, the national media of Turkey stated that India driven by a larger Hindu Nationalism is using the Hindu pilgrimage sites to push for its nationalistic agenda. According to the media, India is exerting a cultural imperialism on Kashmir given the fact that the use of brute force has yielded no results.
The larger focus of the Turkish media was on the Amarnath Yatra which is one of the most celebrated and popular pilgrimages of India located in Kashmir. The Amarnath Cave was located by a Kashmiri Shepherd in 1850 and since then it marks one of the greatest places of interest for the Hindu pilgrims.
As per the Turkish media, the Amarnath Yatra has become a symbol of an intensification of a colonial claim of the Indian state on Kashmir and its people. The pilgrimage brings with it an increased militarization in Kashmir each year and ignores the need to protect the fragile environment. The national media in Turkey has termed the Amarnath Yatra a ‘cultural project’ that is aimed at ossifying the colonial Hindu assertiveness.
Turkish media also slammed India for having made no efforts to regulate the number of pilgrims to protect the environment. From mere 2000 pilgrims in the 1980’s, the number of pilgrims participating in the Amarnath Yatra increased to 1,50,000 this year. Till date, there has been no environmental assessment to evaluate the environmental degradation that occurs each year during the Amarnath Yatra.
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