When Farooq of Awantipora was born, his father’s joy knew no bounds. His father named and groomed him. As Farooq gripped the hand of his father, he dared to take the first step of his life. His father was his hero and an idol. Nevertheless, when conscience and sense of being withers, a savior is overpowered by greed. Thereby, turning the apple of one’s eyes into an eyesore. Unfalteringly, father murders young Farooq. So, the news: ‘Father assassinates son’ (Kashmir Images, 2 July- 2012).
Another scene. Ghulam Muhammad Shah of Natipora had fixed the date for the engagement of his daughter. He had lot of responsibility on his shoulders. He thanked Almighty for arranging a good match for his daughter. However, he had never imagined that he would be killed before solemnizing his daughter’s engagement ceremony, and the daughter will be battling for her life in the hospital. Empty juice pack became the bone of contention and sparked off the deadly fight. The so-called educated family showed its true colours. Hence, the news: ‘Natipora mourns tragedy triggered by felling of juice can’ (Greater Kashmir, 6 July- 2012)
Another episode. Parents of a naïve small angel, a 5-year-old girl had never felt bad for having a girl child. However, they were forced to moan, “Wish she had died when she was born.” This happened when her 17-year-old cousin raped her. The parents are shattered for the lifelong torment of their daughter. Thus the news: ‘Minor raped in Magam’ (Greater Kashmir, 5 July- 2012).
The news headlines of our newspapers smack of the unusual happenings, which were quite unknown to this place some years ago. We are swarmed by an atypical situation, where shock and shame hails us every day.
For us, there is no lull before a storm, as it seems that devastating storm continues to take its toll. People in Kashmir continue to die cheap. Continue to face violence. Continue to bear torture. Apparently, the events related have nothing to do with political hostilities. They can be viewed as a reflection of huge shift in our social dynamics.
However, the fact remains that the conflict here is not over yet. What has actually happened is that the political conflict has been surpassed by a dreaded variant of conflict—a moral conflict. As engineered, whenever political conflict turns chronic, it paves way for a moral vacuum. The one goaded by the conflict industry and manipulated by different players in their own way.
Kashmir, unfortunately, has become a ground for many battles, where various stakeholders have played politics to the extent of fiddling the very character of this society. The skilled briefing from different quarters, and the influx of money from various sources has obviously facilitated all this.
For that reason, with money as a mover and motivator, the social structure of our society has undergone an absolute metamorphosis. Lifestyle standards and values are being shaped accordingly. In a way, a Godless society is evolving where material is making the moral imperceptible. Hence, the moral vacuum.
With most of our leaders and preachers rendered incredible, and the social institutions almost collapsed, the scenario is very hard to change and may even worsen. There is a dire need to address this conflict first, before we are made worthless for any political resistance.
And then, sooner or later, the political conflict may reach to its conclusion, but by then the moral and ethical conflict might have taken deep roots into the conscience of the people and disabled their power of thinking and recognition.
We need to realize that it is a moral holocaust confronting us. It is showing its ugly and dirty manifestation. Civil society and sensitive minds have to think about it before it is too late. The alarm bells are not already ringing, they are drumming. Let us not play deaf.
(The columnist teaches at Media Education Research Centre, MERC, University of Kashmir)
Lastupdate on : Sat, 14 Jul 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 14 Jul 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 15 Jul 2012 00:00:00 IST
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