What frenzy is this?
Amid all this provocation, we have to stand united
SYED ZAFAR MEHDI
What frenzy is this? Who is setting our revered shrines on fire? Who is targeting our Imam baargahs? Who is desecrating our Holy Book? Who is burning our religious relics? Who is bashing up our leaders in full public glare? Who is trying to divide us on sectarian lines? Who is hell bent on crushing our freedom movement? Who stands to benefit from such dastardly desperate acts? Who will unmask this hydra-headed monster?
Just when people of Kashmir were not out of the shock of the Pir Dastgeer Sahib shrine tragedy, another shocking incident in Gund Hassi Bhat Lavaypora, where some ‘shadowy’ miscreants burnt Holy Book and Alam Sharif (a sacred relic for Shia Muslims), has raised many thorny questions. The sequence of these events is not just tragic but deeply disturbing. These are very worrying times and volatile too. In Kashmir, people across communities and sects have lived together in amity and harmony since ages. There have been many such desperate attempts by vested interests, the trouble-mongers wearing masks, to play the spoilsport. But much to their dismay, their sinister machinations and designs have never yielded any results.
They are back in business. Again they are trying hard to whip up the passions and sentiments. They think by targeting khaanqahs and imambargahs they will be able to browbeat us, coerce us and silence us into submission. They don’t realize such gut-wrenching tragedies only bring us together, closer and firmer. We will continue to defy them, resist them, and someday defeat them. The flames from the gutted shrine of Dastgeer sahib have only re-ignited the fire within us. The sight of the burnt Holy Book and Alam Shareef has brought back the images from Karbala, 1400 years after. This is also a tussle between right and might, truth and falsehood. Our numbers might be inadequate, our powers might be negligible, but might always vanishes and right always survives.
These are covert attempts by those ‘hydra-headed monsters’ who have always wanted to see people from different communities and sects in Kashmir bay for each other’s blood. But like in the past, we shall not cave in. We will stand up, and speak out in one voice, against these invisible and shadowy monsters. We are not Shias and Sunnis in this battle. We are Kashmiris. We are Muslims. We are one.
We don’t expect government-appointed inquiry commissions to come out with the findings. We don’t even expect them to be unbiased and fair. This is a theater of absurd and this whole exercise of ordering inquiries and submitting voluminous reports is mere eyewash. But we will unmask and punish our tormentors. We the people. We will not let them get away with it, once again. However the best response this time is to stand united and strong.
The last week or so has brought back the horrifying memories of 2010 summer. The scenes of angry youth pelting stones at police. Hordes of woman protesting on the streets. But, how does one react when enemies kill you, plunder you, burn your shrines, torch your sacred relics, and then easily get away with it.
When the popular movement poses an ominous and existential threat to the ruling class, they resort to such dastardly acts, creating a nonexistent conflict between peoples and communities and pitting them against each other. It is clearly aimed at creating a wedge among people to divert their attention from the bigger issues and bigger struggles.
However it is utterly heartening to see people, cutting across political, social and ideological divide, condemn the tragic incidents in both Khanyar and Gund Hassi Bhat. The official theory on the ‘mysterious’ fire that engulfed the Dastgeer Sahib shrine claimed it was result of short-circuit but the shrine officials were quick to rubbish the claim, saying there was no electricity when the devastating fire started from nowhere.
It is a time of reckoning for our religious leaders and clerics to act wisely and keep people informed about the maneuverings and machinations of the enemies. It is not the time to take out daggers and indulge in blame games against each other. It’s a crucial juncture in our troubled history. We have to be on our toes, lest enemy stabs us on our back.
(The writer is a New Delhi based Journalist. Feedback at email@example.com)
Lastupdate on : Mon, 2 Jul 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 2 Jul 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 3 Jul 2012 00:00:00 IST
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