State Sponsored Militancy : Trajectories From ‘Kashmir Valley’ and ‘Bastar’

Publication Information

Journal Title: Asian Journal of Multidisciplinary Research & Review
Author(s): Dr. Mohammed Sirajuddeen, Dr. S.J Michael & Dr. Kaveri Swami
Published On: 18/04/2022
Volume: 3
Issue: 2
First Page: 105
Last Page: 120
ISSN: 2582-8088
Publisher: The Law Brigade Publisher

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Dr. Mohammed Sirajuddeen, Dr. S.J Michael & Dr. Kaveri Swami, State Sponsored Militancy : Trajectories From ‘Kashmir Valley’ and ‘Bastar’, Volume 3 Issue 2, Asian Journal of Multidisciplinary Research & Review, 105-120, Published on 18/04/2022, Available at


This is an attempt to put a brief comparative perspective on strategies of the Indian State that sponsored vigilante groups to contain ‘militancy’ in Kashmir Valley and Bastar. Starting from the early 1990s, the security establishment raised armed militias from the ranks of militants who were ‘surrendered’ and trained them as a shield against militancy in Kashmir. Popularly known as ‘Ikhwans’, they were organized as groups and set free to perform extrajudicial violence across Kashmir Valley in the face of ensuing demands for self-determination. Similarly, with mounting Maoist activities in the Bastar region of Chhattisgarh, both the central and state government extended full scale support to what emerged as ‘Salwa Judum’ vigilance that resulted in many cases of violations. State aided vigilante culture in both the places produced unique stories of humanitarian questions in the midst of concerns for national security. Led by powerful leaders like Mahendra Karma in Bastar and Kuka Parray and others in Kashmir, the coming of vigilantism stands as an eccentric testimony of the ‘informal structures of violence’ floated by the State. The study, while briefly looking into conceptual aspects of vigilantism, also explores comparative analysis of the process of interface between state, society and politics of conflict in both the places.

Keywords: State, Vigilantism, Conflict, Violence, Security

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