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The Unfinished Letter

Dear Love,

Hope you have reached safely. Now that there is snowfall, you won't have to venture out for long. I have set the photograph atop the mantel. The fireplace looks deserted. As if it is missing someone. You know who that is.

Emmy's cheeks turned pink today. Her cheeks look like those apples. For some reason, she doesn't smile anymore. Did you notice it while you were here ? I also see some random children walking about in the house. Emmy says they have always been here. I do not understand. Its you who has always been there, my love.

I have this feeling that I am getting old. Did you notice any grey hair ? Or even worse- wrinkles ? Tell me if you have. We must be together. We are young, Emmy is a kid but she needs a sister. Or even a brother. You must come back soon. Or I shall go there with Emmy. Life has been kind to us but we can't take anything for granted.

I hear someone calling me. Oh my God ! That looks like you. You're back ...


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Is there any viable alternative to AFSPA?

The mere mention of armed forces evokes the image of courage, bravery and discipline in India. However, in north-east India and Jammu and Kashmir, the picture is vastly altered. Military force is synonymous with fear, brutality and suspicion. The main reason behind this contradictory public image is the “draconian” law, Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act. It has vested the armed forces with absolute power mainly to aid fight against terrorism and insurgency. Several unprovoked arrests, tortures, rapes and deaths go unnoticed under the wraps of AFSPA.Unmarked graves have been found in the valley. Fake encounters and disappearances make headlines.  At times, it is a case of mistaken identity. Violence in Jammu and Kashmir has increased since implementation of AFSPA in 1990. Similar incidents are reported from the north-eastern states. 
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