'My dear brother has achieved martyrdom'

'My dear brother has achieved martyrdom'

A day of mourning in southern Kashmir as families receive bodies of 6 militants

“My dear beloved brother Ruban has achieved martyrdom and his funeral will be held at 2.30 pm.” This poignant  line was written by Syed Tajamul Imran on his Facebook wall on Tuesday morning. His brother, Syed Ruban, was one of the three militants killed 

in a gunfight in Budgam district on Monday. The identity of the deceased had not been either ascertained or revealed immediately.

The trio—Zahid Ahmad son of Nazir Ahmad of Drabgam, Pulwama and Tawseef Ahmad Yatoo son of Abdul Aziz Yatoo of Ghadbug, Lassipora in Pulwama were the other two militants—was killed after a daylong gunfight with the government forces in Charar-e-Sharif area of Budgam district.

Syed Ruban son of Syed Hussain Shah is a resident of Nazneenpora in Shopian.

While waiting outside the Police Control Room, Srinagar, to receive the body of his brother, Tajamul wrote on his Facebook wall: “After all clarification I am waiting for Ruban outside PCR Srinagar from last 8 hours now”.

“They are asking me to wait till they get clarification, but clarification from whom?” he wrote.

“Baba, Maa , sisters, all are waiting”.

The last post of Tajamul indicated the wait was finally over and the family had been handed over the body.

“On the last walk with Ruban, from Srinagar to Shopian,” Tajamul updated.

As the mourners were getting ready to perform the last rites of the three militants, three more militants were killed in Shirmal area of Shopain on Tuesday, triggering massive protests in Pulwama and Shopian districts. Braving snowfall, thousands of people were heading towards the native places of the deceased to participate in their last rites.

“Wake up. Your mother has been waiting for you,” Ruban’s mother wailed and fell unconscious. The mourners sprinkled water on her face to wake her up.

As the bodies passed by village roads, wailing women showered them with flower petals and candies, singing lullabies.

The bodies had not been buried till this report was filed due to inclement weather. Another reason families cited was the bodies had not been handed to them on time. The burial will take place on Wednesday.

To mourn the killings, both districts observed shutdown even as authorities blocked mobile internet service.