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Fight for citizenship and identity: Lives of Pakistani wives of former Kashmiri Militants

In 2010, when the Omar Abdullah government announced a Rehabilitation Policy for former Kashmiri militants in Pakistan who crossed the Line of Control between 1990 to 2009 but did not participate in active militancy, Akhtara came to Kashmir as the bride of Bashir Ahmad Mir. She started living in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district. Akhtara wasn’t alone in this journey. In 2017, the J&K government said that the 377 ex-militants along with 864 family members came to Kashmir after the announcement of the policy.

Twelve years later, Akhtara regrets her decision to leave Pakistan and travel via Nepal to make a life in Kashmir. Akhtara’s husband was arrested in December 2021 under the Arms Act. His arrest has pushed the family into penury.

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