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Dawn after the darkest hour
Ms Kausar Razvi3/16/2018 11:14:57 PM
My mind is immersed in nostalgia while I write this article. It takes me back to my school days at Green valley educational institute which was located at lush green suburbs of Ellahibaghin Srinagar. Being situated in between mustard fields and paddy fields my school offered spectacular sight in the spring season as we enjoyed seeing the flowers bloom.
The experience was enriching to study in the lap of nature. I remember my Urdu teacher used to say if you are not feeling good go and take a walk across Dal lake or quench your thirst with the water of Chasma e Shahi.. We had a happy school life other than some occasional news of disturbances and military encounters at different places. These incidents sometimes led to strike or hartals which were called on by different parties and would continue for few days. I considered these hartals as some extra holidays and won't bother much until 2008 when Amaranth Land revocation controversy happened leading to protests, killings and complete shutdown for months.
We were trapped inside our houses and it would be difficult to access markets for daily use commodities. The services like phone and Internet were disturbed. Pain and distress was widespread.
I shifted to Delhi for my further studies but the memories of clear blue sky, stars in the night and the gush of fresh air touching my face early morning would linger in my mind. Painfully I thought about my friends and relatives who were stuck amidst unrest. After few months situations returned to normalcy but the narratives of unrest, closure, protests and killings kept on repeating in subsequent years.
The heavenly Kashmir has become a place vulnerable to disturbances and keeps telling the tales of fear and deaths. Being someone who has spent quite a number of years there, a question keep arising in my mind whether the normalcy will ever return. Will Kashmiris ever get their share of peace and happiness.
Political parties kept blaming each other for the prevailing situations while they initiated few forums for dialogues ,it never bore any fruitful result.
Of late I heard of an event called Paigham e Mohabbat organised by Jammu and Kashmir coordination committee formed by common people of Kashmir. In the event Sri Sri Ravi Shankar ji a spiritual and humanitarian leader was invited to address people from different places of the valley. The event saw a gathering of more than 10000people coming from far flung areas. It was very inspiring to see these people coming together for peace.
Few friends of mine who were present in the event shared their amazement onseeing a large number of women who had come to attend the event. They also shared with surprise that very less number of security personals were present to support the event which is quite unlikely in Kashmir valley.
Inspite of so many hurdles people from different walks of life and backgrounds had come together. The people probably saw a ray of hope as for the first time an event with no political inclinations was organised for them where they could come out and share their grievances. It was not a political rally neither an assembly supporting some ideology rather it was a meetup of people who wanted peace to prevail in Kashmir valley. While the common people came together, the government doesn't seem to be interested in encouraging such activities even if they talk about solving the Kashmir issue through dialogue. It is highly surprising that our leaders who claim to represent us and lead us don't come forward to encourage peace initiatives and believe more in staying in their comfortable nests while a common Kashmiri suffers.A section of media people reported that the youth who had joined hands in the event for peace had actually come for cricket kits and jobs. The same media also have many times quoted earlier that the youth go for stone pelting on being paid some meagre amount of money. I feel that portraying the youth of Kashmir as sold out is unfortunate. Media forms an important pillar to uphold democracy but when a section of media has taken it on themselves to spread negativity it can be considered as setback on democracy.
As it is said that the dawn comes after the darkest hour of night, so a hope sustains that the peace will return after so much of pain and bloodshed. I pray that the initiatives of Sri Sri Ravishankar ji and the people of valley will lead to a peaceful Kashmir.
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