Tral family gets overwhelming support after forces raze house to ground

Muhammad Ramzan Ganaie is surrounded by his Sikh and Muslim neighbors.
Tral family gets overwhelming support after forces raze house to ground
GK Photo

Muhammad Ramzan Ganaie is surrounded by his Sikh and Muslim neighbors. Everyone here is busy performing various activities at the debris of his house that was razed to ground by forces during a gunfight with militants on March 5.

It seems like a busy function as some volunteers are cooking food, some removing the debris while a few are seen constructing a shed where Ramzan's family is expected to stay until he rebuilds his house.

But Ghulam Hassan Dar, a neighbor of Ramzan, has offered his new house to his friend. "Out of my two houses I am offering one to my friend until he reconstructs his own house." Dar said.

A group of Sikhs were seen consoling the victims and suggesting that "we must not fiddle with the debris as any explosive material might be inside it."

"Only few days ago, a Bomb Disposal Squad defused several unexploded mortar shells from the debris. We should not rush to remove it," they were seen telling the victim family.

Barely few yards away from the flattened house of Ramzan, the front portion of the double-storey house of Ghulam Ahmed Sheikh has suffered heavy damages due to the blasts.  His wife Raja says the walls of her house have developed cracks due to the impact of the blasts while the front windows and doors are broken.

Few locals outside the encounter site are collecting cash and other material for the victim family. "We have collected Rs 4 lakh for our brother Ramzan who lost his house completely during the gunfight." they said.

People from Rathsuna, Reshipora, Nigeenpora and Nazneenpora villages have collected rice, money and other things while those visiting the encounter site are also contributing in cash and kind.

"We will carry on this mission until we can rebuild a house for Ramzan," said a volunteer.

Earlier, the gunfight that raged for more than 24 hours at Hafoo Nazneenpora in south Kashmir's Tral sub-district left five houses partially-damaged. One house was completely razed to ground by Improvised Explosive Devices.

Locals recall that the blasts were so powerful that doors, widows, glasses of several houses were shattered. Even some TV antennas can be seen lying pierced on the ground.

"We lost everything. It was in our fate. We could only recover some utensils and tin sheets. We are thankful to people who supported us and have been collecting money and ration for the victim families," Ghulam Ahmed Sheikh, a victim, said.

Meanwhile, local residents accused the government forces of not sanitizing the gunfight sites. "We do not expect any favors from the government. We just request them to immediately clear this site. We fear that any mishap might occur as everyday hundreds of people visit here." they said.

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