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The Valley Without a Curfew Pass: Kashmir Since August 5

On the first Saturday of September, as our flight landed at the Srinagar airport, the airline staff announced, 'You may now use your mobile phones.' Some of the Kashmiris on board, including myself, broke into a dry, humourless laugh. Who would have thought that more than a whole month without any communication with the people back home, a month spent traumatised and troubled, laughter would be my first reaction? I disconcertingly accepted that airlines did not have any announcements streamlined for places under siege and no way to tell people that they had now entered a space made entirely of uncomfortable, enforced silence.