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Zia, Ather

Grant Type: 
Engaged Anthropology Grant
Insitutional Affiliation: 
Northern Colorado, U. of
Status: 
Active Grant
Approve Date: 
March 2, 2016
Project Title: 
Zia Dr. Anther, U. of Northern Colorado, Greeley, Colorado - To aid engaged actvities on 'Exploring Strategies for a Stronger Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons in Kashmir,' 2016, India

Preliminary abstract: Since 1989 an armed struggle against India is ongoing in Kashmir. In the counter-insurgency measures implemented by India over 70,000 people have been killed and more than 8000 men have been forcibly disappeared in custody by the Indian army. The Association of Parents of the Disappeared Persons (APDP) has become a tireless human rights activist organization searching for the disappeared persons. The APDP is comprised mainly of Muslim women, including mothers and wives (called half-widows) of the disappeared men. Since the APDP seeks to hold the Indian state agencies accountable for the human rights abuses, it does not have much institutional support and is subject to repressive policies by the government. On one hand while the APDP has become an internationally visible movement, but on the other hand it faces three major challenges (ineffective legal procedures for fighting court cases, no steady funding and issues of widow remarriage), which limit its work and sustainability. This workshop held over a course of 4 days will bring together primary stakeholders (women-activists, legal and religious scholars/activists, donors) to understand the breadth of these issues and interrogate strategies through which the APDP can be made more robust and create support for its members.