Indian-administered Kashmir is one of the most militarised places in the world.
Recent violence between demonstrators and Indian security forces in the disputed region left at least 80 civilians dead and about 12,000 wounded. One group even accused Indian forces of human rights abuse.
And, according to a 2010 poll of Kashmiris, a clear majority preferred independence or joining Pakistan.
Given the violence and allegations of human rights abuses, is it time for Indian-administered Kashmir to seek independence?
"Kashmir is an idea whose time has come," says University of Northern Colorado Professor Ather Zia, originally from Indian-administered Kashmir. "I think Kashmiri people have given a referendum in blood, and these past three months have proved that."
"When we address this dispute as a Kashmir issue, we are doing an injustice to the whole lot of people who are not Kashmiri," says writer and cultural critic Sualeh Keen, who supports joining India and is also originally from Indian-administered Kashmir. "The demand for cessation is only confined to a certain section of people within the [Kashmir] Valley."
In this week's Arena, Zia and Keen debate independence in Indian-administered Kashmir.
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Source: Al Jazeera News