Valley’s Orphan Daughters: A Photo Essay

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In Gulshani Banat Hostel in Budgam’s Chadoora area, around 100 orphan girls are enrolled for learning. Some of these daughters have lost their parents to ill-timed fate, but most lost to ‘conflict’ back Valley. Kashmir Life’s Photojournalist, Bilal Bahadur tells visual story of orphan daughters of vale.

Dear Daughters: These Kashmiri daughters have lost their parents, most of them due to turmoil back home. For these daughters, the word parental  love has become a distant concept, one that can only be imagined, never  felt. The most obvious example of this is orphaned children, who must  suffer from images of death, loss and absolute tragedy. But, these daughters  are living with smiles at Gulshani Banat Hostel Kashmir.Banat is an abode which belongs to the daughters without parents whom  the society calls as orphans. The basic thought of these daughters is Orphaned but  not alone.That`s why these daughters are saying, "Don`t call us orphan,  please."

Dear Daughters: These Kashmiri daughters have lost their parents, most of them due to turmoil back home. For these daughters, the word parental love has become a distant concept, one that can only be imagined, never felt. The most obvious example of this is orphaned children, who must suffer from images of death, loss and absolute tragedy.
But, these daughters are living with smiles at Gulshani Banat Hostel Kashmir.Banat is an abode which belongs to the daughters without parents whom the society calls as orphans. The basic thought of these daughters is Orphaned but not alone.That`s why these daughters are saying, “Don`t call us orphan, please.”

Solemn Sitting: A daughter is a bundle of firsts that excite and delight, giggles that come from deep inside and are always contagious, everything wonderful and precious and your love for her knows no bounds. -- Barbara Cage

Solemn Sitting: A daughter is a bundle of firsts that excite and delight, giggles that come from deep inside and are always contagious, everything wonderful and precious and your love for her knows no bounds.
— Barbara Cage

Absorbed Aggregation: Daughter are angles sent from above to fill our heart with unending love. -J. Lee

Absorbed Aggregation: Daughter are angles sent from above to fill our heart with unending love.
-J. Lee

Scriptural Synergy:  What I wanted most for my daughter was that she be able to soar confidently in her own sky, whatever that may be. -Helen Claes

Scriptural Synergy: What I wanted most for my daughter was that she be able to soar confidently in her own sky, whatever that may be.
-Helen Claes

Angelic Affectation:  A daughter is a miracle that never ceases to be miraculous...full of beauty and forever beautiful...loving and caring and truly amazing. -Deanna Beisser

Angelic Affectation: A daughter is a miracle that never ceases to be miraculous…full of beauty and forever beautiful…loving and caring and truly amazing.
-Deanna Beisser

Duty Divine: "Daughters are flowers that are forever in bloom." Author: Unknown

Duty Divine: “Daughters are flowers that are forever in bloom.”
Author: Unknown

Blessed Bunch: "There's something like a line of gold thread running through a man's words when he talks to his daughter, and gradually over the years it gets to be long enough for you to pick up in your hands and weave into a cloth that feels like love itself." Author: John Gregory Brown

Blessed Bunch: “There’s something like a line of gold thread running through a man’s words when he talks to his daughter, and gradually over the years it gets to be long enough for you to pick up in your hands and weave into a cloth that feels like love itself.”
Author: John Gregory Brown

Eager Eye: "Oh my son's my son till he gets a wife, But my daughter's my daughter all her life." Author: Dinah Mulock Craik

Eager Eye: “Oh my son’s my son till he gets a wife,
But my daughter’s my daughter all her life.”
Author: Dinah Mulock Craik

Team Trance: A beautiful cry as I fade away I open my eyes to see her face The miracle of a new life Through all the pain and strife Heaven's angel here to take my place To run the race of this

Team Trance: A beautiful cry as I fade away
I open my eyes to see her face
The miracle of a new life
Through all the pain and strife
Heaven’s angel here to take my place
To run the race of this

Sacred Scenes: “It's so hard to forget pain, but it's even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.” ― Chuck Palahniuk, Diary

Serene Scenes: “It’s so hard to forget pain, but it’s even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.”
― Chuck Palahniuk, Diary

Sacred Shade: “It's not always easy being her daughter.' I think,' she said, 'sometimes it's hard no matter whose daughter you are.” ― Sarah Dessen, Along for the Ride

Sacred Shade: “It’s not always easy being her daughter.’
I think,’ she said, ‘sometimes it’s hard no matter whose daughter you are.”
― Sarah Dessen, Along for the Ride

Meditative Meet: “No, I am never setting foot in this house again it scares me and makes me sad and I wish you could be a mom whose eyes worked but I don't think you can. ” ― Laurie Halse Anderson, Wintergirls

Meditative Meet: “No, I am never setting foot in this house again it scares me and makes me sad and I wish you could be a mom whose eyes worked but I don’t think you can. ”
― Laurie Halse Anderson, Wintergirls

Patient Pack: “She still remembered sitting for hours as a little girl and pretending to be a hassock. A foot stool. Because if she could just stay very small, and very quiet, her mother would forget she was there, and then she wouldn't scream about people and places and things that had gone wrong.” ― Eloisa James

Patient Pack: “She still remembered sitting for hours as a little girl and pretending to be a hassock. A foot stool. Because if she could just stay very small, and very quiet, her mother would forget she was there, and then she wouldn’t scream about people and places and things that had gone wrong.”
― Eloisa James

Captioned by: Bilal Handoo

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3 Comments

  1. Dear Bilal,

    This is a great photo-feature. You are doing a great job. Kudos to you and your team.

    Regards,
    SR

  2. Mohammed Shakir Shaikh on

    Dear Bilal,
    MASHALLAH A great job.

    Your/Teams work is an important tool to motivate people & be thankful to ALLAH for granting us Parents.

    Wanted your help I am a practicing Muslim ALHDULILLAH (Qualification MBA-Finance),Currently working as a Finance professional, Wish to marry a Pious Kashmiri Muslim orphan .

    Request your help As ALLAH gives ajar on intentions.Har chiz pe Kadir Allah hai. If you could be the means for this cause will Inshallah get Reqard in Akhirat……u have my email address.awaiting your reply..

  3. Asaalamualiekum sir,
    i wish i could marry one of any those girls please help me sir for this allah will reward you on the day of judgement .i dont know where to go and apply for same but if urgoodself can show me the way/procedure for getting married to one of those angles i will be very greatful to you.

    Abid Bashir wani.
    9796999599.srinagar.

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