by Luke Diep-Nguyen
On August 15, 2019, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave the 73rd India Independence Day speech. During his speech, Modi announced revoking the Indian Constitution’s Article 370 which gave Indian states such as Jammu, Kashmir, and Ladakh their special status. The previous week, on August 4, India had already put Kashmiris under lockdown.
India established several constraints over Kashmir over the week such as the suspension of internet and cellphones or other technological means of long-range communication and established barbed-wires and steel walls. Prime Minister Modi claimed that these states, particularly Kashmir, where the revocation security lockdown is emphasized and the population is mostly Muslim, promoted corruption and injustice towards women and children. Prime Minister Modi also announced that a new law was established that allowed anyone to buy land and live in these regions where the Kashmiris fear could change the culture and demographics. During his speech, Modi also claimed that this change would boost India to a $5 trillion economy within five years. Modi’s speech also led to the Indian National Congress attacking Modi’s speech and actions using tweets with #ModiLiesatRedFort.