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On Tuesday, as an earthquake measuring 5.6 on the Richter scale unleashed havoc in Pakistan-administered Kashmir, a friend of mine there took to Facebook in desperation. His family, he wrote, is living in the Indian-administered side of the territory, but he had no way to find out if they were safe. The reason: the communications blackout imposed on Kashmir by the Indian government, soon to enter its third month. “Is there any humanity left in this country?” he asked.
As he wrote this, television channels were broadcasting images of President Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the glitzy “Howdy, Modi!” event in Texas, attended by thousands of Indian Americans. Trump compared Modi’s popularity with that of Elvis Presley and referred to Modi as “the father of India” — in the same year that marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi.
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