I have a story of pain to narrate

Muhammad Asif Rashid

I am Kashmir. I am in movies, I am in poetry, I am in love, I am paradise on earth, I am the Switzerland of poor, I have been described as “more beautiful than the heaven and the benefactor of supreme bliss and happiness”. But as they say everything comes with a cost that is exactly I have been paying for all this since ages. I have always been an easy prey to the predators whether Mughals, Afghans, Sikhs or Dogras. I was taken by the Britishers as war indemnity. I was sold to Gulab Singh by Treaty of Amritsar also known as `SALE DEED OF KASHMIR’. From the very beginning Kashmiri people have been bought and sold like cattle.
After the British rule ended, the modern crisis in Kashmir began immediately, when Maharaja was given the right to decide on which way to go and was made the master of destiny of Kashmiri people and decide their fate without taking their consent. Since then this paradise, land of saints (peeri veer) has turned into a territory of war and world’s largest prison.
Presently I am a small fish caught in between three sharks India (IOK), Pakistan (POK) and China (Aksai Chin). Both India and Pakistan claim their right over me, both of them beat their chests for me but see the irony nobody asks my people what they want? India continues its control over Kashmir through lacs of troops, numerous agencies, thousands of policemen and draconian laws. Killings have become a routine in Kashmir. Just like there are daily household tasks, schoolings, traffic jams, power cuts, there are killings daily in Kashmir. Every day in Kashmir is a martyr’s day. Now my people do not mourn any more. They don’t even feel strange about it as they are used to it. More than one lac people have died, thousands have disappeared. Unmarked graves, orphans, widows, are numberless. Kashmir has become a living hell for its people a concentration camp of killings, rapes, curfews, protests, disappearances, crackdowns, stone-pelting, fake-encounters, etc.
The freedom movement of Kashmir has turned into a battle of interests of the extremist leaders. They do not support or respect each other. Every one of them wants to present himself as a big leader of Kashmir. They issue calendars for protest, they give calls for strike, they take rest during winters, go out of valley and come back with the slogan `Khoon Ka Badla June Main’. They have turned it into a seasonal struggle. But it the ordinary Kashmiri who is suffering every time throughout the year whether in chilling cold of winters or in burning heat of summers, whether in rains or in floods.
Even after the passage of so many decades of loot, bloodshed and destruction, Kashmir continues to burn with uncertainty about its future’ but it is the undying spirit of Kashmiris, their passion for freedom and faith in Allah which gives them hope that `KASHMIR WILL RISE AGAIN FROM ASHES
Source : www.greaterkashmir.com

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