Our name is red
WHY HAS THE CLOCK TOWER TURNED RED NOW?
I was recently with my friend walking near ‘Gantaghar’ that suddenly a question popped into my mind; “why has the clock tower turned red?’, I asked her. She quickly replied “because peace has been snatched from her.” she was right!
Earlier the clock tower was painted in a peaceful colour – white - which now has turned red, after the 2008 unrest. The colour red they say has a high level of visible intensity in the spectrum of light, and perhaps life as well. An ordinary Kashmiri would know as his palette of life has no other colour. I wish this article could have been printed in red, for it appears that our last resort of getting noticed would be a higher level of visible intensity on the spectrum. Wails, screams, and slogans have fallen on deaf ears. When a mother lost her child for an unknown reason; when she searched her beloved son from pillar to post, holding his photo in her hand, enquiring from each person who passes by. When she cooks dishes for her child and calls to her son that the food is ready, come! lest it will get cold.
When such a mother lost her comfort, her peace, how can she remain at peace within her heart? Similar is the case with the clock tower when deaths occur they surround it, how come it remains white? It has witnessed thousands of killings, how can it remain silent; it is smeared with blood?
It speaks louder with its redness, while the bruises of mothers are still afresh as they knew that their sons would never return. With screams aloud, pounding their chests, calling the name of their jewels, pulling their hairs in the midst of the road, they are searching their solace. People console them with sympathetic words, but the flames remain alight; their wounds shall remain open until they have a glance of their beloved sons. They begins to talk with walls and question themselves, who has devoured their sons and why? What will they do now? How will they bring them back? These questions haunt their minds and snatch peace from them.
They murmur, in an unclear voice, and commemorate their last conversations with their loved ones, to share with their friends or family members. Their minds are filled with unanswered questions. They resonate past and speak aloud with moist eyes (It’s been a constant fight, for petty things you made while going to school and coming back from school and I want that tussle again. It’s impossible and painful to imagine my world without you, my son. If I were to die and you were to live. I would not be afraid of death. I would be at ease and calm. But if you were gone, this world would seem too hostile. I watch my phone constantly, I watch the reception bars rise and my heart skips a beat - thinking that somehow you are trying to reach me and the closer you get the more the bars rise. But then the bars go back down and my heart sinks to the bottom of the ocean. I feel as if I have been kicked off the edge of life. I curse myself, thinking that maybe I didn’t wish it hard enough and that’s why you couldn’t get through.
In the mornings when the alarm on my phone rings, I jump to it, mistaking the alarm for your call. When I say “Hello”, then only do I realise my madness, a tide of disappointment and bitterness washes over me leaving me drenched in self-pity. I still can’t forget you my son, you are my peace at heart, why have you left me, are you cross with me? This is the story of Kashmir; this is the story of the clock tower that turned red with the redness of innocent blood. And peace remained a far cry.
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Lastupdate on : Mon, 16 Apr 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 16 Apr 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 17 Apr 2012 00:00:00 IST
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