Sunday, 14 September 2014

Martyrs Day: 14 September

#BalidanDiwas #14September #25YearsInExile

On September 14, 1989, a noted lawyer and BJP national executive member Pandit Tika Lal Taploo was brutally killed by JKLF militants in Srinagar. Murder of this kind man and a political stalwart, shook the entire Pandit community. In the coming days posters came up on walls, summarily ordering all Kashmiris to strictly follow the Islamic dress code, prohibiting the sale and consumption of alcoholic drinks and imposing a ban on video parlours and cinemas. Notices were pasted on doors of Pandit houses, asking the occupants to leave Kashmir. The so-called well wishers and neighbours turned up unannounced and advised that ‘abhi hawa kharaab hai’; ‘escape to Jammu’. More reports of brutal killing of Hindus, invariably Kashmiri Pandits, began to trickle in notably: Justice N K Ganju of the Srinagar high court was shot dead. Pandit Sarwanand Premi, 80-year-old poet, and his son were kidnapped, tortured, their eyes gouged out, and hanged to death. A Kashmiri Pandit nurse Sarla ji working at the Soura Medical College Hospital in Srinagar was gang-raped and sliced into bits and pieces at a sawmill. In villages and towns across the Kashmir valley, terrorist hit lists are circulated with the names of Kashmiri Pandits wanted dead. A terrifying fear psychosis began to take grip of Kashmiri Pandits.

On January 19, 1990 Jagmohan took charge as governor of Jammu and Kashmir imposed curfew in the valley. JKLF and Hizbul Mujahideen terrorists used public address systems at mosques to exhort people to defy curfew and take to the streets. Masked men, firing from their Kalashnikovs, terrorised cowering Pandits. As evening fell, the incitement became louder and shriller. Three taped slogans played repeatedly from the mosques: 'Kashmir mei agar rehna hai, Allah-O-Akbar kehna hai' (If you want to stay in Kashmir, you have to say Allah-O-Akbar); 'Yahan kya chalega, Nizam-e-Mustafa' (What do we want here? Rule of Shariah); 'Asi gachchi Pakistan, Batao roas te Batanev san' (We want Pakistan along with Hindu women but without their men).

….and tens of thousands of Kashmiri Pandits across the valley took the painful decision to flee their homeland to save their lives from rabid jihadis. As many as 300,000 Kashmiri Pandits fled their home and hearth to live as refugees in their own country. A once prosperous community, proud of its rich heritage, lived in grovelling poverty, dependent on government dole and charity, in squalid refugee camps. It’s now 25 years…. an entire generation of exiled Kashmiri Pandits has grown up, without seeing the land from where their parents fled to escape the brutalities of Islamic terrorism.
Lest we forget our roots: Balidaan Diwas in honour of those who gave up their lives so that we could live.

1 comment:

  1. We have been among those victims.we can never ever forget the worst period of our life in those refugee days.REFUGEES IN OUR OWN COUNTRY.
    today whole country is mourning over the flood/flood victims of Kashmir,but I don't know why my heart is not feeling any pain for them.Perhaps this had to come.They say Kashmiri Brahmin is the highest Brahmin community in the world.Touching/torturing this community has shown its aftereffects.Perhaps this had to happen.


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