Project description

The project addresses the issue related to the anger of youth against the terror activities perpetuated against the innocent human beings in the name of religion across the world.
It specifically highlights the fact about how in the Muslim Majority state- a new trend can emerge in which people openly shun their religion to protest against the terrorism of ISIS.
The Project is about the findings of the Census Data in which I found that the new trend has emerged wherein people have in open stated that they belong to no religion. Such a trend was first of its kind at the place which is India’s only Muslim majority state- Jammu and Kashmir. The state, which borders Pakistan, has 12.5 million people and 68.31 percent, or 8.56 million, are Muslim.
As I checked the census data, I found out that India’s only Muslim majority state, houses the highest number of people without a religion in India.
This has led some to argue that the state is witnessing a new generation of people shunning religion to protest religious-based violence.
The census data for Jammu and Kashmir, published by local media in early 2017, showed 20,000 people not wanting to associate with any religion. In all of India’s other 27 states combined, this number was only around 33,000.
People who stated they have "no particular religion" only account for 0.16 percent, the number remains significant for the state and more so when compared with national averages.
There are apprehensions that the activities of the terror groups like the so-called Islamic State are responsible for people shunning their faith in Kashmir. "Youth in Kashmir are very sensitive. Everything is on the internet these days. They have seen how innocent people are slaughtered and killed by Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. To protest such activities they have shunned religion," one religious cleric Molvi Gulzar said when I quoted him in the story.
In the last 30 years, an estimated 100,000 people have died in Jammu and Kashmir, including civilians, militants and army personnel, after groups began an armed struggle for freedom from Indian rule.
A Professor, Aabid Simanani was quoted in my story who said that in a state like Jammu and Kashmir that has been witnessing bloodshed and mayhem for decades, the youth are frustrated and could be seeking a way they believe will give them solace
The project is for the general audience and it informs them about the new findings in the census data which are interesting as well as shocking for one and all.

What makes this project innovative?

The project is innovative in nature because so far the story wasn’t highlighted from the perspective in which I did. There was a mere religious column in the census data which talked about the religion of the people and that was from where I picked up the tread to highlight the number of people who have shunned their faith and sought reasons in my story for the same.

What was the impact of your project? How did you measure it?

The story led to the widespread discussions about who silently the terror activities could affect the religious communities far from the place where they are perpetuated. The activities done by ISIS in Iraq had the bearing on peoples’ religion in far off place- Jammu and Kashmir.
People discussed the new trend on social media widely and there were clerics who expressed concern over it. By using the census data, such findings weren’t even covered by any journalist here.

Source and methodology

I got the details from the Census website ( and searched Jammu and Kashmir state in it. Then I compared the data with the other Indian states to find out the exact numbers and average number of people in India who have shunned their faith. The census data was my prime source of information and then I sought quotes from the religious scholars of Islam, Hinduism and Christianity. I also got the details from a sociologist to find out reasons and outcome of such a trend.

Technologies Used

I used the Google Chrome as my internet browser and Microsoft word as my typing software. I also used PDF reader to read and analyse the census data

Project members

Christopher Joseph
India Editor of UCA NEWS.
He helped and guided me throughout the story


Project owner administration

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