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Pied Piper

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In the searing summer of 2018 when the “unholy alliance” disintegrated and ushered in an era of New Delhi’s direct control in Jammu and Kashmir, a 12-year-old arrived in Srinagar’s Press Colony with a poetic campaign for her captive father. Her wait ended when Sarjan Barkati, the ‘Azadi Chacha’ and ‘pied piper’ of 2016 civilian protests recently returned home after four years of incarceration. Beaming over the festive footfall in her tiny home—a dusky dwelling…