Threats, criticism from cleric force Kashmir's all-girl band to break up
In this Sunday, Dec. 23, 2012 photo, members of Indian-controlled Kashmir’s first all-girl rock band Pragaash, or First Light, perform at the annual 'Battle of the Bands' in Srinagar, India. (AP Photo)
The Associated Press
Published Tuesday, February 5, 2013 6:18AM EST
SRINAGAR, India -- The first all-girl rock band in Indian-controlled Kashmir has decided to disband after only one concert because of threats its three teenaged members received on social media and criticism from a top Muslim cleric and separatists.
The fate of Pragaash highlights the simmering tension between modernity and tradition in Muslim-majority Kashmir. The region has been plagued by violence during a two decade-long uprising against Indian rule.
Adnan Mattoo, the group's music teacher and manager, said the three high school students in the band are scared and want the controversy to end.
Pragaash performed in public for the first time in December at a "Battle of the Bands" organized by an Indian paramilitary force. It won third place.