Pellet victims stage protest

Several pellet victims today stage demonstrations here to press for their demand to ban pellet guns in Kashmir.

The victims assembled at Press Enclave under the banner of Pellet Victims Welfare Trust. (PVWT).

“We demand ban on pellet guns as hundreds of people in all age groups have been blinded by pellets,” the protestors said. 

Among the protestors was youngest pellet victim of Kashmir, Hiba Nisar, who was accompanied by her mother.

On 23 November last year Hiba, who was then 18-months old, was hit by pellets in her eye during protests at Kapran village in Shopian district. Later, her family said government had extended financial help to Hibba and deposited Rs one lakh in her account for three years.

“Till now, we have spent around Rs four lakh on Hiba’s treatment to regain her eye sight” said Hiba’s mother Marsala Jan.

 “We want end to use of pellet guns. I as a mother can feel the pain of all mothers whose sons and daughters have been hit with pellets,” she added.

She said that Hiba has to visit hospital in Srinagar every 15 days for check up. “Pellets have ruined her life. She weeps during night and day due to pain.

Hiba has undergone two surgeries as she had suffered corneal perforation due to pellets. Doctors have maintained that the treatment is a long-drawn process and we have to take lot of precautions to ensure that she doesn’t get any complications,” she said.

Muhammad Ashraf Wani, president  PVWT said “continuing use of pellet shot guns in Jammu and Kashmir is snatching not only the eye-sight of youth but is also impacting their livelihood.”

“Hundreds of youth who have been rendered without vision in their eye-sight are struggling to make ends meet. PVWT advocates for immediate banning of pellet shot guns in Kashmir, as their continuous use will only render more youth blind. The burden has been immense on the pellet victims and their families, both financially and psychologically,” Wani added.