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Iltija Mufti: The Heir of a Political Legacy?

Iltija Mufti: The Heir of a Political Legacy?

Daughter of Mehbooba Mufti, Iltija Mufti who is also the grand-daughter of veteran politician Late Mufti Muhammad Syed is making headlines every now and then. After the revocation of Article 370 in Kashmir, when all the political leaders were out under arrest and all the Kashmir was put under siege it was the then 32 years old Iltija Mufti who participated in TV debates to talk about it.

She later even took over her mother’s Twitter handle to exclusively keep the world updated. And she in a way became the voice of millions of Kashmiris who because of the internet ban and siege had become voiceless.

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She became, in a sense, the unofficial voice of many Kashmiris who were unable to speak out because of the crackdown on the Internet. She claims it was by mistake that she got to be the focus of the country.

Iltija posted on her mother’s Twitter account, which currently has more than 370,000 followers, 46 days after Mehbooba Mufti was detained by the police and claimed to have received the authority to do so.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP official)’s Twitter account tweeted a video of her earlier this month, hinting to a video series with the hashtag “Aap ki baat Iltija kae saath”.

Iltija turned 35 this year and is of the opinion that Kashmiri youth are full of sorrow, despair and sadness.

Iltija Mufti was born in Kashmir in 1987. After attending school in Kashmir for two years, she relocated to Delhi to finish the remaining two years of her formal education. Political Science is her field of study from Sri Venkateswara College (University of Delhi). She then relocated to the UK where she completed her Masters degree in International Relations at Warwick University in Coventry, England. She returned from the UK and is residing in Kashmir since then.

Iltija has been snooping around the periphery of Mufti’s news conferences, demonstrations, and party meetings for the past few years, especially since her mother was released from custody.

Mehbooba Mufti is a former and the first and the only female chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir.

After the abrogation of Article 370 in 2019, unemployment within Kashmir has risen even as the central government promised investment. According to the latest data, unemployment among the youth of Jammu and Kashmir has reached 46.3%.

Iltija Mufti says, ‘Now, on one hand, a youth who is unemployed, without a job, who lacks a sense of security and on the other hand he sees what is happening to our brothers and sisters, minority communities, Dalits and Christians in the rest of the country. If it is happening, he makes a very thoughtful and conscious choice.’

According to Iltija Mufti, the ‘conscious choice’ she is talking about is becoming a militant. Kashmir has been plagued by violent insurgency since the late 1980s, which has resulted in clashes with Indian state forces and has claimed between 40,000 and 80,000 lives since 2002.

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