BURHANISATION OF SOCIAL MEDIA AND THE RESISTANCE MOVEMENT IN KASHMI
Keywords:Social media, Kashmir, Kalashnikov, Burhanisation, Conflict, Mass uprising, AFSPA, POTA
This study is an impact assessment of Burhan Wani, a freedom fighter from Kashmir who was killed by Indian security forces in July 2016. Wani, through use of social media, gave a new outlook to the Kashmiri struggle for freedom, which is completely indigenous and involves new generation of Kashmiri youth. The soft images diluted the negative image created by state controlled Indian media about Kashmiri struggle and gave birth to a new phenomenon i.e. interplay of message, images and sentiment called “Burhanisation.” These images did not pass through routine media gate-keeping; therefore, they triggered a mass resistance against the Indian rule in occupied Kashmir and Burhan Wani was glorified as a freedom fighter. The study explores how these images through the use of social media promote a soft image of resistance by giving it an indigenous outlook which is more effective than the symbol of ‘Kalashnikov’ in catching the attention of the international community.
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