Abode of saints yearns for peace

Hope Kashmir is restored the glory it once had

Khalid Isaac
Srinagar, Publish Date: Dec 9 2018 10:21PM | Updated Date: Dec 9 2018 10:21PM
Abode of saints yearns for peaceRepresentational pic

Kashmir known as Pir Vaer (abode of saints) has virtually turned into a battlefield as encounters, protests and strikes have become a part of lives. In fact we have learnt to live amidst turmoil and have accepted it as our destiny.

One needs to go back into the history and recollect what happened to Kashmir. It seems that someone “cast a spell” over peace loving Kashmiris. Till 1989 mostly people in Kashmir were happy. They had nothing to worry about but the onset of 1990 led to the eruption of militancy. Armed men appearing on the streets of Srinagar opened a new chapter in the history of Kashmir. Since then the Valley known as abode of saints has been bleeding profusely.

Kashmiri leaders, who claim to be fighting for the people’s cause for the past thirty years, seem to be in no mood to relent as they leave no opportunity to claim that sacrifices rendered by the people of Kashmir won’t go in a vain and the “war will continue till death.”

People of this strife torn land stand confused as they don’t know whom to side with. If they support the Indian state they are labeled as ‘traitors’ and ‘collaborators,’ if they support separatists, security agencies term them as anti-national elements. A common Kashmiri is caught between the devil and the deep sea. His desire to live a peaceful life has been snatched. In fact he knows it very well that he has to earn his livelihood amidst threats. He is caught between the guns which are roaring from three sides.

It seems that everyone in Kashmir is a part of the problem as no one has the solution and the life is going on. People have even stopped complaining. They seem least bothered about who is saying what. They are least interested in reopening of roads and borders being made irrelevant. Their only concern at present is what next? The very sight of a man in uniform sends shivers down the spine of a common man. In case the uniformed man becomes suspicious the common man knows that he could be detained and treated as a “suspect” till proven innocent.

Despite Kashmir witnessing so much of bloodshed, tourists who come to the Valley consider Kashmir as the safest place and Kashmiris as the most hospitable people. The three decades of conflict have not changed the basic nature of a Kashmiri man. He continues to be soft, gentle and caring. Killings used to terrify him in the past and do terrify him even today. A common Kashmiri is fed up of violence and him being labeled as a “violence monger.” He wants tourists to return and the Valley to be abuzz with the activity again. A common Kashmiri is fed up of the life he is living. When he looks towards India and Pakistan he feels sorry for his land as both the countries have developed rapidly and their denizens are prospering with each passing day. Unfortunately same does not hold true for a common Kashmiri man as he is even finding it hard to manage two square meals a day. 

Addressing a news conference in Srinagar vice-president of Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry Dr A M Mir said business community in the Valley has been suffering huge losses since the floods of 2014 and a "congenial atmosphere" was needed for trade. "Our economy is on the brink of getting finished as trade and commerce has taken a backseat domestic and international market pressures coupled with the situation at home have broken our back. We need an alternative to frequent strikes as this will infuse some life into the businesses," Mir said. (Greater Kashmir Dec 7, 2018).

It’s not the business community only that is suffering. The fact is that entire Kashmir is facing hardships. The traders have mustered courage and have spoken out that they cannot keep on going on strike every now and then and they need a break. People who have been insisting that Kashmir would continue to burn till India and Pakistan resolve this issue are doing injustice with the common Kashmiri, who is not interested in what India and Pakistan want to do.  He wants that pristine glory of his land should be restored and wants to live peacefully. 

khalidpress@gmail.com


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