Community Correspondents

Basharat Amin

Basharat joined Video Volunteers in 2017 as a Community Correspondent from the Shopian district of Jammu & Kashmir. Despite his relatively recent affiliation with Video Volunteers, he is one of the most passionate and active members of the network.

Basharat has worked with several organisations as a correspondent and researcher and has been an advocate for human rights in Jammu & Kashmir for quite some time now. He graduated with a diploma in Human Rights from the Indian Institute of Human Rights in New Delhi. Basharat then joined the International People’s Tribunal on Human Rights & Justice in Kashmir (IPTK) and has had several of his research projects published in their report on structures of violence in Kashmir. In 2008-2009, he conducted research for Amnesty International through interviews of prisoners, on the deplorable conditions they languish in and on the pathetic state of prisons and detention centres in India. Currently, he is associated with Jammu & Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS), working with them on a project about the unfair violence perpetrated on the citizens of his state.

Basharat says that joining Video Volunteers gave him a far more accessible and wider platform to raise awareness about human rights violations, in several of the border districts of Jammu and Kashmir. He also produces videos on the government’s ignorance on issues related to public amenities, infrastructure, shortage or lack of water and electricity and so on. Due to the state being prone to conflict, his videos mostly reflect the negative effect this has on the people; from violence to the disappearance of citizens and activists to the basic amenities that people are deprived of in the midst of the conflict. Basharat’s interest in covering violence and conflict in the state has led him to report on the lives of the Rohingya refugees in Jammu and on how refugees are put to unfair suffering by both local residents and security forces due to the constant unrest in the region. His research and articles have been published in some of the leading papers of Jammu & Kashmir including Rising Kashmir and Greater Kashmir.

After VV launched mobile journalism, Basharat made his first video on the dilapidated roads of Gadh Mohalla, Shopian, which had nearly 150 households struggling to travel across the district. During the monsoon, the situation was exacerbated with vehicles unable to pass through, and the lawns of residents that lined it on both sides, being destroyed. The locals reached out to the authorities multiple times but had not been granted definite action yet. After the video was published and concerned officials made aware of the situation, the repairs came through in no time.

As a practising Muslim, Basharat is also concerned about the discrimination that Muslims and other religious minorities face in India. He feels that there is a need for more minority voices in media or voices that report on their experiences and their side of the story. He is grateful to Video Volunteers for giving him an innovative medium to cover the pressing issues in his district that can now reach readers or viewers across India. Basharat hopes to continue to help eliminate human rights violation and educate the citizens of Jammu & Kashmir on their rights through his mobile journalism videos.

Videos from Basharat

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Lack of Bridge Costs Life Of A Young Man In Shopian

/ April 7, 2022

The above video is from Shopian, about the death of a 26 year old youth, drowned in the river while carrying Rice and Corn on his back, is heartbreaking.

‘Democracy is Power of the People, Not Of Those Ruling’

/ February 19, 2021

Press freedom in Kashmir is increasingly under threat and we get a sense of it in an interview with the executive editor of Kashmir Times.

Impact Story

IMPACT | Illegal Riverbed Mining Stopped in RanbiAra, Shopian, Kashmir

/ August 31, 2020

Video Volunteers reporting helps to stop illegal mining of sand and minerals from a Shopian riverbed in Kashmir

Community Survey

Kashmir’s Cricket Bat Industry Provides Livelihood to Thousands

/ August 29, 2020

Kashmir and its bat industry, one of the only two regions in the world where willow grows, provides livelihood to thousands of people in the valley.

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Illegal Sand Mining on RambiAra River in South Kashmir Goes on Unchecked

/ August 14, 2020

Illegal sand-mining in a tributary of Jhelum poses long term threat not just for the environment but for south Kashmir's sustainability.

Hit By Dual Lockdowns, Kashmiri Hawkers In A State of Crisis

/ June 11, 2020

India’s Kashmir valley has been in a state of lockdown, much before the COVID-19 imposed lockdown in the rest of India, since August 5, 2019. It has hit street vendors, hawkers and daily wagers the hardest. 27 year old Suhail Ahmad, a resident of Shopian used to sell different commodities...

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Youth in Shopian Reach Food Supplies to 500 Families | COVID 19 | Jammu &...

/ April 29, 2020

Community correspondent Basharat Amin met with Owais Mushtaq and his friends who have taken the initiative to reach food supplies to needy families in far off mountain villages. Shopian district in South Kashmir has more than 50 positive cases of COVID 19. The lockdown may be imperative in controlling the...

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Ground Reports: On Kashmir Lockdown

/ October 1, 2019

It is 60 days into lockdown in Kashmir since the internet and communication were blocked off. Basharat Amin, gave us ground reports from Shopian, Kashmir.