By: Syed Fakhar Imam Geelani
As I wake up from my bed, a meek glimmer of Sun enters through the window coupled with the sound of motors running on the road adjacent to my building marks the beginning of my day. Staying in Bangalore for past 9 months hasn’t kept me away from the unrest in my hometown as the new tales of tragedies start pouring in everyday after my fight with the sunrays that sensitize my eyes. My hands latch on to the smartphone which keeps buzzing with the notification of full charge as I keep it plugged all night.
A paroxysm of pain runs through my whole body as I scroll down the posts on Facebook which always report of a death, blinding or an injury of my Kashmiri brethren. Same goes with the twitter, Hashtags trending like, #kashmirkilling, #Kashmircrisis, #kashmirunrest,# Innocentkillings don my timeline and all I can do is tweet in anger against the state oppression which gets a meagre one retweet or sometimes none. The regular practice follows up with a bath succeeded by the discussions with my Kashmiri flat-mates about the solutions of Kashmir issue which look pretty far from being attained. We mourn, we curse and share a joke or two while we eat and leave for our respective offices. My presence in the office is much felt as I can’t refrain myself from sporting a jovial nature among my colleagues, but somewhere deep inside lies the agony and melancholy, from which I can’t keep myself away. Curious bunch of colleagues ask about the ongoing conflict prevalence in my home which I try to explain them without bias. Some of them empathize, some don’t, but every discussion ends on a note where ideas are shared and no conclusions made. The thought of seeing a dawn of peace in Kashmir keeps my head buzzing all day and working on assignments which I am being paid for go hand in hand.
The chaos in the head rattles my skull and a customary well-being phone comes from my mother. She starts with an instruction of not discussing about the Kashmir issue with anyone and compels me not to share or like any post regarding to the conflict on Facebook. This concern sprouted due to the detention of a Kashmiri man in Chhattisgarh on the charges of sharing some anti-state post over social media. She shares the stories of night raids, pellet firing and stone-pelting all around the place and the concern for my family’s well-being amplifies.
All I have learned in the last 35 days is that the Valley is under a complete lock-down for more than a month and the killing spree has not ceased ever since. Around 60 innocents have lost their lives, 5000 Injured (300 blinded with “Non-Lethal” pellet guns). Media gag, Internet gag and network gag continues and the self-proclaimed world’s largest democracy is a blot on the word “democracy” itself. Jingoistic media adds fuel to the fire and the common masses of the country are infused with unjustified venom against our home. These numbers are alarming and the thoughts which accompany these numbers are immensely saddening and subdued. The fears seeped deep into alleys of the valley have consumed the alleys of my heart and soul.
So, after a day of hard work, conflict ridden thoughts and information of untoward incidents in the valley, I begin my journey back to my flat. A pleasant rush in the city, no fear and a sense of contentment is seen among the masses, which is entirely contrary to what is prevailing in my hometown. I reach my flat, share the office discussions with my flat-mates, browse through the new protest videos and pray for the prevalence of peace in our heaven while having dinner. I reach to my bed; plug in the charger of my phone which indicates the red sign of low battery and lie down in a hope of seeing the sunrise through the window with news of peace and freedom for my Kashmir.
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