In Indian politics, the touchstone is one’s attitude toward the occupation of Kashmir. One’s attitude toward war & genocide trumps every other progressive view one holds & that is just as true in every other country. Not rah-rah for the working class, not ‘you go girl’ when it comes to women’s rights, but whether you are outspoken & active against war.

So when there is celebration over Abhijit Banerjee winning the Nobel prize in economics, we need find out where he stands on Kashmir. Because if you’re an economist who doesn’t get the effects of militarism on economics, your theory isn’t worth much.

Thank you to Bobby Kunhu for posting this elaboration by Preetika of Banerjee’s views on Kashmir. Let the celebrations end.


“Nobel Prize winner, Abhijit Banerjee, advocated the “Punjab model” of counter-insurgency to handle Kashmir.

In Oct 11 edition of Hindustan Times, he wrote: “But it is also time to think hard about Kashmir. The best way to secure the border is to get local people to start looking out for terrorists — which is what ultimately helped us in Punjab. For that we need the local people on our side.” [Link in comments]

I have been crying hoarse about why we need to talk about Punjab and the so called “defeat of terrorism”. Punjab model means annihilation of a generation. It means a vicious policy of catch-kill-reward which turns members of a community against their own, where monetary gains overrun legality, community and morality. It means extrajudicial executions, enforced disappearances, mass illegal cremations. It means a fractured society and pervasive distrust.

It means that after more than three decades we are STILL fighting for justice. To tell our stories about how our brethren were reduced to ashes.

The now almost defunct J&K police was given increasing powers to act as a counter-insurgency arm and not be confined to “law and order” tasks alone. The SPOs are are another notorious legacy of the Punjab model: criminalised and deeply communal. They have been handed out bravery awards despite being accused of human rights violations.

Mr. Banerjee basically advocated for genocide.

Fuck your Nobel!”