The Government should declare us a critically endangered species like the Hangul (Kashmiri Stag) and put us in a reserve. After all, amongst other names, Muslims also called us Hanguls and just like the Hangul, we have been hunted down for centuries and are now battling for our survival.
While I continued to hold on to my values of assimilation, accommodation and respect for all faiths, I was given 3 choices in 1990 – Convert, Flee or Die! I fled but I still held on to the values that were so deeply ingrained in me. And then in 1992, everything went up in smoke. The orchard was vandalized, trees were cut down and the house was set on fire by the same neighbors I had so much faith in.
This is the story of my village, my home and my paradise that is no longer mine. A quiet and peaceful valley was transformed into the inferno it is today. From the Sufi culture of the early 50s and 60s to the Sharia culture , the entire social fabric of the valley changed drastically. Whenever people would ask me what I would do after retirement, I never had to think twice before replying that I will go and rest under my chinar. But look at my misfortune, both my Paradise and the Chinar are lost for me. Curse be upon Pakistan and it’s cahoots in the valley for having directed their guns at us and put us to flight. My home was lost forever and so was my Paradise.
Mr Jawahar Lal Nehru, where have you landed your own Kashmiri brethren – your own flesh and blood? What were you thinking? Did the political pressure of the British and their western allies weigh far heavier than your love for Kashmir and it’s people? You might be considered a great visionary by some but the decisions you made have had far-reaching and disastrous consequences for the future generations of Kashmir.
This starts where I left off at – https://kreately.in/the-journey-of-kashmir-from-dar-al-sulhpeaceful-to-dar-al-harbhateful-part-1/ After 1975, the number of Islamic study schools in the valley grows by leaps and...