By Mohammad Aslam
Last Sunday of September they say is to be celebrated as a World Deaf Day. A full day dedicated to the cause and issue of those humans who are in partiality with listening and eventually with speaking. Many call it a “disability” but I see it only as a “challenge”.
I am one who can’t hear and eventually my speaking is a bar in itself. The love of my life, the warrior, my mother never viewed this thing as a disability and rather considered it to be a challenge. She sends me to the special school and she herself specialized in the sign language. I am doing my graduation and have done few diplomas in photography.
Photography is my passion. I am totally and absolutely in love with this art. For a couple of years, I worked with the Red-Cross and now I work in the Government Medical College, Srinagar. I am a photographer there.
Apparently, the story of my life till, as I have explained it, seems easy and simple, but it is to my knowledge, how challenging it has been. Hurdles at every step; administrative bottlenecks, social barriers, taboos and what not. However, as my mother has taught me, it’s a challenge that is divinely ordained and there is no option but victory.
Lack of communication, history bears the testimony leads to a feeling of a being lost, secluded and often broken. Emotions make humans and at times, the failure to express the same leads to a heartbreak that only the deaf ears can hear and no one else.
Technically, on analyzing, being mute and deaf is not that much a grave issue as our society and administration has moulded to be. Working eyes and brain are the essentialities and in most of the cases, deaf people are blessed with the duo.
Problem lies with the society, administration and the family who on knowing the un-heard nature of a person un-hear his existence and leave him skill-less and thus making him, a lump of breathing clay, essentially independent on the mercy of others.
Nature has the mechanism of reciprocation. To quote my own example, the pictures clicked by me get a lot of acclamation and appreciation, while the mirror smiles at me, with the question what makes these ordinary pictures, extraordinary. Though I don’t have an explicit answer to this, but implicitly I know that it’s God’s way of reciprocation, love and equivalence.
Children to parents are children, no matter the gender, ability, genius or disability. I am the only son of my mother and she is my responsibility and I announce with a proud feeling, I am successfully carrying my all responsibilities.
My request on this day is to one and all, to help and co-operate, making the life of every human a simple and easy one. Don’t consider any challenged person a liability, no human essentially is a liability. Help each one in the development of skill and attainment of education; remove the barriers, bottlenecks and hurdles in the way of learning and skill bearing…
On this day we all must pledge to make life easy and similar for each one of us.
(The author introduces himself as “a mute photographer, capturing the silence of life”.)