Doda massacre survivor to spearhead literacy campaign

Having survived the Doda massacre in 1999 in which over a dozen of his family members were killed, one of the survivors Joginder Singh will be spearheading a literacy campaign in Chenab Valley.

Singh (24), who lost his near and dear ones in the attack 20 years ago, is currently pursuing his masters in commerce in Pune.

On July 19, 1999, when the Kargil war was in its last phase, a group of heavily armed militants struck at the remote village of Lehota in Doda district, killing 15 people and injuring several others.

Singh, who grew up in an orphanage run by NGO Sarhad, wants to go back to the conflict-stricken region and work for the people there in the field of education.

A literacy campaign named ‘Ghar Ghar School, Har Ghar School’ will soon be launched by the same NGO that took Singh in, with him as the chief coordinator.

“The aim behind launching the campaign is to create awareness about the significance of education in life and there could have been none better that Joginder to spearhead it,” Sarhad’s founder president, Sanjay Nahar, said, adding that a school in every household of Jammu and Kashmir is the underlying theme of the unique literacy campaign.

Giving details about the campaign, Nahar said that it would initially cover Chenab Valley. “Later, we aim to cover border areas in Jammu, Kargil, Leh and other districts of the state. While noted poet, writer and lyricist Javed Akhtar has agreed in principle to support the idea, we are in touch with some other prominent personalities as well,” he said.

Meanwhile, Singh said, “Till now, I was seeking a job from the government but except promises and assurances, I have not received anything. Now, I will not ask for a job. Instead, I will work for the betterment of Doda and adjoining regions and work towards creating educational opportunities for children.” (with PTI inputs)