Zuv' chumm' bramhaan'
Ghar' gachaa

Nov 24, 2006

What justifies my pain?

Juz A Kashmiri had a post here - "Kashmiri Pandits and their significance"

An interesting post - though only a one-sided and half-painted view... Not the complete story...

I had a comment to post on his article... and to take a cue from his art of commenting, I decided to post that note here as a blog as well...

JAK and Cashurr' here raised a question - as to why there are not any blogs from Pandits supporting the cause of Kashmiri Muslims and expressing sorrow at the happenings in Kashmir.

I am not sure if there are none - and like Cashurr' said, wouldn't matter either. Wonder if some of you are old enough to remember, there was a (so-called self-styled) Pandit leader who was in the valley even after the bulk of exodus had happened - supporting the so-called movement. This fellow Wanchoo was gunned down by the very people he was apparently supporting. Practically it doesn’t matter what Pandit’s think or support - when it comes to the cause of majority - for the simple reason that the numerically we dont matter - and thus politically too we have been rendered dispensible...

So - its obvious that a community which has got so marginalized owing to lack of its political value and being a dispensible minority, would obviously focus all its energy and mindshare in its own plight and suffering, rather than fight someone elses cause - 'cause' which in first place was the reason for its own suffering, for no mistake of his own.

Well, if it does matter to anyone - I for one will sincerely and whole-hearted share here that I do feel pain and agony at the hapless killings, the sinful aura and the gloom of pain that rules the valley today. Killings - custodial or targetted, bombs - at pickets or gatherings, disappearances - by arrests or border crossings, widows - scarred by army bullet or by the grenade from a terrorist - are all despicable and painful to any human. As someone pointed out in one of the posts, Kashmir was a (relatively) peaceful place till before 1989... where a woman could go out even late at night, where one didnt see daggers drawn to resolve arguments (hurling a kangri would do)... It was somewhat close, if not an absolute picture - of the proverbial paradise.

That condemnation done…. A Kashmiri Pandit still wonders:

What on earth happened overnight in the valley - that the face of my neighbour changed suddenly? Was I in comatose for some unknown period – not to see this coming? Or have I been cheated by the neighbour who had been conspiring for so long, sending his kith-kin across the border to get trained in aiming his gun at me when he returns? And he is today holding me responsible for his agony – for not supporting him in his demands – demands which he was conspiring for behind my back – demands which I don’t agree to at all.

If his son died in the ambush at the border – his kith are saluting him as a mujahid, a shaheed. He died for some cause – even though I don’t understand what his cause was – nor relate to that cause. But why was my brother killed? He had no demands, no cause, no claims. He didn’t get trained to hurt anyone. He didn’t come to kill or steal anything.

He eulogized the terrorists; he invited them home and thought they were His messiahs. He made a mistake and pushed my dear valley into a period of war and strife… and where there is war – overt or covert, there will be death, pain, sorrow and agony. But why was this pain and agony in my share – I didn’t invite any terrorist, I didn’t want a war, I didn’t want a messiah… I just wanted to live a simple straight life… a life which my neighbour just high-jacked.

My kith-kin got killed at hands of terrorists – just because I don’t pray in the same mosque as his, just because I didn’t agree with the cause he was motivated for, just cause I still loved my land and tri-colour. My kith was branded a mukhbir and killed in cold-blood, and he applauded the killer – calling him a Mujahid. Last month, he welcomed and garlanded this killer in those very streets… and yet expects me to empathize with his pain. Did he really ever share my pain? Never, beyond lip-service. If he really had, he wouldn’t have garlanded that black-belt killer…

Yes, there 0.5 million army there has done many a wrongs – I am willing to believe all that… it would happen in any war zone. But I didn’t invite that 0.5 million army there… did I? He himself did… when he called in thousands of terrorists from the other side of border. Did I do either of these acts? Why on earth am I the culprit then?

What justifies my pain then…?


Juz A Kashmiri said...

Dear Soul in Exile,

I am really surprised that you have called my post as a "one-sided" and "half-painted" view. In fact I am shocked to read this at your blog. Particularly when I have already praised your for your comments.

Can you please tell me what makes you think it is a one-sided view. Is it because I tried to exonerate Pandits from conspiracy theories or Is it because I acknowledged the fear they were living in. I am sorry to say sometimes I feel blogs like yours are meant to create misunderstanding.

I leave the decision to call my post as a one-sided / half-painted upto your readers. This is the URL where my post is available.


I am sure you will have your own ideas and would not like to believe in hear-say.

Juz A Kashmiri

A Soul In Exile said...

Dear Juz

"In fact I am shocked to read this at your blog. Particularly when I have already praised your for your comments."

Juz, thanks for praising - but does that mean I indebted to comment to your liking. Sorry, I will stick to my perception of things - rather than change my analysis to suit public pleasure.

"Can you please tell me what makes you think it is a one-sided view. Is it because I tried to exonerate Pandits from conspiracy theories or Is it because I acknowledged the fear they were living in."

One-sided - because your note tries to earn magnanimity of having being kind to Pandits - but fails to answer the root question. If you can justify my pain - I would find a balanced view. But with just a lip-service to Pandits, while their killers are being garlanded in the valley and hailed as hero's... is hypocrisy to me. You are shying from calling a spade a spade...

Once again, if you believe in those conspiracy theories – say so and come out to say that the killing of Pandit’s was right then... Won’t change anything for us anyway!!!

If you too think that Pandit’s were traitors just because we didn’t join your ‘so-called movement’ (of which we were never part of) – that’s your opinion and you needn’t act benevolent with exonerations. Don’t act as if you are doing some ‘ehsaan’ by exonerating us – because I know my truth and I don’t need anyone to exonerate me of anything. No one has the right or the power to do so – what is false is false.

Your very comment about “exonerate Pandits from conspiracy theories” makes me feel that you don’t believe what you say – but you are writing to ensure a politically correct image.

"I feel blogs like yours are meant to create misunderstanding."

You are entitled to your analysis - I write what I feel at heart.

"I am sure you will have your own ideas and would not like to believe in hear-say."

Dear Juz... I have lived through the life I am writing about. I am not a keyboard activist who lives in USA/Europe and talks of atrocities.

How do we know said...

loved this post.