Braid Choppers on the run in Kashmir

Beyond pranks and rumors


October 17, 2017

/ By / Kolkata

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Braids are being chopped across the northern states of India

Women across the northern states fear the braid chopper

After being a menace in Delhi, Rajasthan and Haryana, chopper causes political instability in the Kashmir valley region.

Some Indian states are currently seeing the worst kind of rogueries. Girls and women in their homes fear that anytime they can fall prey to braid choppers and then, wake up to find a portion of their hair cut, lying right next to them.

Several cases have been registered across the northern states of India. The first few incidents of this latest human rights violation were reported in the state of Delhi. Then, several cases were reported in Haryana and Rajasthan. Now, the state of Jammu & Kashmir is trying to fight its own battle against the menacing braid choppers.

These incidents have raised serious questions because it has not just taken place once or twice, but there has been a series of such cases, where victims experience a shooting pain in their head and wake up to find their hair chopped off.

With no leads, fake reports and rumours, the administration in all the four states have been struggling to solve the case. Moreover, in the name of nabbing the culprit, there have been cases of witch hunting in Rajasthan.

Chopper lights up the Valley

Things in Kashmir have turned out very different from rest of the states. “Almost 30-40 cases of braid chopping have taken place in villages as well as in Srinagar city,” said Khalid Tufail, president of Jammu Kashmir Wattan Parast Front (JKWPF), a political organisation.

According to Khalid, “I have absolutely no idea on who is behind this. It can be a mass hysteria or it can be done by some miscreants just to disturb the peace.”

Here different people have different notion of what is happening in the region right now. Some are trying to find an answer in mass hysteria while others think that these activities are just to distract people from much more serious political issues.

With a different point of view, Khan Ansur studying  Social Work in University of Kashmir said, “I think this issue has been engineered to divert the people from getting into the main issues such as political instability and other serious issues related to it.”

The braid chopping incidents have caused a security breach in the region. In the name of catching the miscreants several innocents are being targeted by the mob and therefore the police have surrendered to the situation as well.

Khalid portraying the situation in the region, said, “A 70-year-old man was killed by a mob on the misconception of being a braid chopper. He was hit by a brick on his head.”

“There are various rumours floating around, such as, a woman was also killed by braid choppers, braid choppers belong to forces, but nothing has been confirmed yet. People say that they caught many braid choppers, but police took them away and later released them. Whenever any group of people assemble to catch a suspect, it ultimately turns into a mob asking for freedom and raising freedom slogans which result in clashes between the forces and mob,” he added.

Khan Ansur doesn’t feel the same though, he said, “Sometimes I feel that authorities are not doing enough to catch the offender. It doesn’t seem that police is playing its role in solving this issue.”

Currently, a shutdown has been called upon in Kashmir to protest against the government’s inability to catch hold of culprits. The valley remains unstable, while the mysterious wrongdoers roam around freely.



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