Hyderabad: The Kashmiri’s pain is palpable but they are unwilling to talk about it as their children are in jails and the Army is outside their homes. They are sceptical about interacting with non-Kashmi-ris as their trauma and fear is beyond the latter’s understanding. This is what a human rights group learnt, during a visit from October 7 to 10, to Baramullah, Pulwama, Shopian, Budgam and Srinagar.
Malik Moatasim Khan, national secretary of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, from Hyderabad, saw fear and anger in their eyes. This was his first visit to the Valley to get a first-hand look.
He said, “Our non-political group wanted to know how people are, and found they are not happy at all. They are in a sad state. Their men and children are in jails, communication is hampered and they have Army men standing outside their homes. They are not willing to talk to non-Kashmiris as they do not know what is being told about them. It took a lot of convincing to make them speak.”
Curfew has been lifted but the shopkeepers open from 6 am to 9 am only. Just a few medical stores are open all day. Children at home do not come out. They are neither going to school nor coming out to play.
There is no leader including the village sarpanch, who has been taken away. The group obtained the FIR to check why the sarpanch was arrested and it stated: “You have the potential to convince people that abrogation of Article 370 was wrong and for that reason you have been arrested.”
Women whose men and children are not at home are traumatised and so lock themselves in during the day.
A common feeling of hurt, betrayal and trauma resides in both the rich and the poor in Kashmir. They silently protest and are not willing to talk about the government’s weakening of Article 370.
Worse, the internal transport system has stopped. People do not have money for use as daily wagers have had no work. This has led to not purchasing medicines, providing emergency care or attending to other needs. Khan said, “Five families said that when there was a death in the family the neighbours came forward for final rites, and relatives who were far away could not be contacted. This inability to communicate a death is adding to their trauma. There are no newspapers or media channels working, through which this can be communicated.”
The group found that to engage the Kashmiris, human rights violations and illegal detentions must stop. Only initiating dialogue will help.
High demand for insulin in Kashmir
The human rights group from the Jamaat-e-Islami Hind that went to Kashmir has returned with a a list of medicines to be supplied in the Valley as people who do not have the money to purchase medicines.
The demand for insulin injections which are required for diabetics is very high. Those suffering from kidney ailments are also unable to purchase the medicines.
The requirement is more in the rural areas where most people are not moving out of their homes.
With children also stranded at home, the group will provide indoor games so that they can be kept engaged. Children will not be sent to school till the parents are convinced that they are safe. With security forces standing in front of them, most parents say that they will not send children to school till they are around....