No end to miseries for parents of disappeared persons
‘We don’t need money; Want our loved ones back’
Srinagar, July 10: Rafeeqa from north Kashmir’s border district of Kupwara sees no light at the end of the dark tunnel.
Faced with abject poverty and miseries, Rafeeqa, 45, is waiting for her husband since 1994—a wait that sees no end.
“My husband Abdul Hamid Shah left for work in 1994. He never came back,” Rafeeqa told Greater Kashmir. “These 18 years have been like hell for me.”
In a sit-in protest on Tuesday, under the banner of the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP), many families gathered here at Pratap Park to protest the alleged enforced disappearance of their kith and kin. The association has been holding sit-in protests on 10th of every month.
Rafeeqa said she comes all the way from Kupwara to register her protest. “Until I am alive, I will keep protesting. I want my husband back,” she said.
Rafeeqa is not the only woman who protests the disappearance of her husband.
Naseema, 30, of Fateh Kadal finds it hard to get her point through. “My husband, Syed Anwar, is missing since 2002. He left home for work but never returned,” she said. “Only favor we are asking for is to return our relatives back. We are sick. We need them,” Naseema said. “It is becoming difficult to tell my daughter about her father. How long would I lie to her?”
Ali Muhammad Dar of Nooripora Baramulla said his brother is missing since 1991. “My brother Ghulam Mohi-ud-din was taken away during a night raid. We are asking for his whereabouts. We will not stop till justice is delivered,” he said.
Azra of Tengpora said her son is missing since 1992. “Masked men entered our house and took my son Mushtaq Ahmad Dar along. He was just 21 years. The perpetrators came and took him from the home,” she said.
Hamida of Naidkadal said her brother Bashir Ahmad Sofi was dragged out from the home on June 17 2003. “We had a knock on the door at around 1 am. When we opened the door, army men in tens ransacked the home. Dragging Bashir out, the soldiers locked the door from behind. Bashir never came back,” she said. “We went to the Police. They said come day after tomorrow. A week passed police was clueless.”
Hamida said many times her family appealed to the authorities but no one paid the heed. “I shall never stop this exercise. I will continue to protest against the disappearance of my brother.”
Agiya Kaur of central Kashmir’s Budgam district said her son Ishpal Singh went missing after he stepped outside his home to buy sugar. “After he went out he never came back. I went to police station, they said go away. I believe the only way I can get Ishpal back is to protest and about his whereabouts. I am hopeful that these protests yield the justice,” she said.
Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) chairperson Parveena Ahangar appealed the valley people to help her construct a memorial for disappeared at Lawaypora. “We have our land measuring more than one Kanal at Lawaypora. We are planning to make a memorial in the name of disappeared. For this I appeal the valley people to come forward and help in this endeavor,” she said.
Parveena said from next month, the association would hold its protest at Lawaypora. “We will observe our next protest on August 30. We also appeal business houses to help us construct the memorial,” she said.
Parveena expressed dismay over what she called “some people were taking money in the name of disappeared persons.”
Lastupdate on : Tue, 10 Jul 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Tue, 10 Jul 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Wed, 11 Jul 2012 00:00:00 IST
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