Zuv' chumm' bramhaan'
Ghar' gachaa

Jul 8, 2009


The Muslim terrorists operating under multiple forms of incarnations like Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front, Muslim Janbaz Force, Ul Umur, Al Burq, Hizbul Mujahideen, Al Jehad, Ikhwan-ul-Muslim et al sharing visceral hatred against Kashmiri Pandits subjected them to intimidation, panic, rape, murder and sexual assault with a view to exterminating them from the soil of Kashmir. In sheer violation of universally accepted charter of rights and law as couched in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international covenants the terrorists debased, dehumanised and brutalised the cultured and moderate community of Kashmiri Pandits by destructing and killing them in a punitive war. In heaping death and destruction on them, the terrorists pursue the objective of dismemberment of the state from the Indian liberal democratic order for a new political alignment based on religion. Terror was created and violence propagated to obliterate dissent and
opposition to the formulated goals of the terrorists. The elements that were deemed inimical to the terrorist campaign have been liquidated with impunity and subjected to an untold orgy of Nazi-type torture and persecution. Waves of communalism have been fanned and fuelled thereby polarising the Kashmiri society for furtherance of political ends. The Kashmiri Pandits as a distinct ethno-religious group have been under a conspiracy targetted, maimed and butchered in groups and put to detestable forms of violence and brutality to destruct the Indian support planks to materialist the secessionist goal thus flagrantly violating and transgressing their inherent political rights and freedoms.
As an indoctrinated breed churned out from the Muslim seminaries of hate, fanaticism and religious bigotry the Muslim terrorists launched an all-out religious crusade against the non-Muslim ethnic groups directed to the end product of establishing an Islamic state placed on the foot stool of Shariat (Islamic Law) which reduces the ethnic and religious minorities to the exiles of a gulag deprived of human rights and human dignity. They through the dynamics of a religious war are in the quest of pan-Islamic theme and vision of ascendancy of Islam and the sociopolitical system bearing its seal and sanction at the expense of religion and faith espoused by minority groups and subgroups. The militarized Islam is not chasing political goals alone but is rivetting its sights on religious objectives too. The forcible imposition of a particular religion along with its socio-political order on an ethnic minority harbouring its own set of beliefs and forms of
worship is violative of human rights and essential freedoms that flow from them.
With the shared ideology and agenda of thrusting a second partition on India and transforming the state of Jammu and Kashmir into an Islamic state, the Muslim terrorists have lost no time in spotting their political and religious enemies in the Hindu minorities especially the Kashmiri Pandits. Politically the Kashmiri Pandits repose full faith in and are unflinching supporters of the secular polity of India and as such do not subscribe to any trend of thought and wave of movement aiming at snapping the historical, cultural and political ties of the state with indict. It is pertinent to put that they have made no mean contributions to the dynamics of growth, development and consolidation of democratic and secular order and political and economic humanism allied with it and as a patriotic force have bitterly opposed the constitutional barriers which have generated the vicious and baneful forces of separatism and fundamentalism in Kashmir. In matters of
religion the Pandits with the chequered history of torture and persecution at the hands of Muslims have rejected the antediluvian tendencies breeding religious perversion and paranoia and are wedded to the Indian discourse of allowance for tolerance and non-conformity and stand for full flow of freedom for every individual to preach and practice his religion. They have not only mocked at but held in utter contempt the Islamic police enforcing codes and fatwas (religious decrees).
The Kashmiri Pandits have vigorously fought the secessionist forces seeking the placement of Jammu and Kashmir outside the political and constitutional umbrella of India. They fought the Plebiscite Front which as an organisaistion strove for and was pledged to the secession of the state for its emergence as the personal fiefdom of the Sheikh dynasty. After the Plebiscite Front as a result of political developments was deemed to have lost its political relevance and was disbanded, the condemnation of Pandits and hateful thrust against them did not come to end and as always they were maligned and projected as the enemies of the Muslim secessionist goals and ambitions. They were abhorred and projected as the "sworn enemies" and concerted efforts were set afoot to marginalise them for the fact that they stood for the fuller merger and integration of the state with the Union of India. The Muslim identity of Kashmir to the exclusion of diverse ethno-religious
minorities as an essential cog in the processes of total Islamisation pursued at state level was exposed to the shreds by the Pandit minority. That is why they have been branded as the inveterate enemies of Muslim identity which is being perceived under constant threat from India harbouring a Muslim population equivalent to that of Pakistan.
With their well-known positions on politics and religion the Kashmiri Pandits as such have been opposed to any movement for Kashmir's annexation with Pakistan and are equally inimical to the retrograde Muslim programme of pushing the state into the lap of rabid fundamentalism and they, therefore, as a resisting force were mercilessly massacred and eliminated in hundreds. Some of the killed were engineers while some held positions in administrative setup. Some victims of genocide were teachers with remarkable achievements in the domain of learning and creative thinking while some pursued legal profession. A Hindu scientist who was brutalised to death had a number of research papers to his credit while another was a highbrow intellectual with enormous studies in the realms of philosophy. Some of the killed ran groceries while others held ordinary jobs hardly making two ends meet. Even a mad person was not spared. Most of the victims to the Muslim massacre
were innocent and peace-loving people who had lived in penury and had been denied opportunities under the policy of discrimination which was institutionalised by a system dominated by the Muslims.
As a weak and unarmed religio-ethnic group the Muslim terrorists put them to a mass massacre and had their not been prompted by their "race-memory", a repertoire of past history of their persecution, to buzz off their natural habitat, the terrorists, wildly frenzied and bent upon their destruction and decimation, would have finished them off as a species.
Terror was created through threats, bomb-blasts, rumours and apochryphal allegations and the terror machine was so endemic that every man, woman and child became vulnerable. No Pandit felt safe from the penumbra of violence and terror. Kashmir for the hapless Hindus was reduced to a killing field which was prowled about by communal and terrorist hyenas.
It was not only in violation of the canons of ethics and morality that Kashmiri Pandits as a miniscule minority were cruelly killed and tortured but also in utter disregard of decent and civilised political deporment recognised by the Charter of Human Rights Declaration and several other international agreements. The killings were monstrous and barbaric paling the killings of Jews by the Nazis into a triviality. The Pandits were abducted front homes, work-places or streets and tortured and killed to the brutal ecstasy of their tormentors. The terrorists butchered them even in their homes in the presence of their defenceless and hapless inmates. Labelling them as "informers" and "agents of India", they were killed in large numbers without any considerations of age, vocation and political commitments. It is a genocide of Hindus for the political commitments that they harboured and the religion that they espoused. As members of a community with a tremendous
history in time they have been bodily and mentally harmed and injured and conditions have been created to bring about their death and destruction. The terrorists have not concealed their first resolve to destroy the Kashmiri Pandits not only as political opponents but also as religious enemies. They have generated tremendous mass support for the genocide of Pandits through the Mosque Committees, plethora of Islamic organizations and Quranic Schools run by the Jamaat-i-lslami.
The horrendous torture deaths brought about by a resort to barbaric methods will cause a shiver down the spine of the worst Hitlerites. Burning cigarettes were applied to the naked bodies of Kashmiri Pandits. Boiling wax was poured on highly sensitive parts of their bodies. Nails were driven into their foreheads. Their eye-balls were gouged out and tongues chopped off. Male genitals were cut off. Private parts and breasts of women were hewn open. Women were ripped into two equal parts on a wood-slicing machine. Gangrapes were resorted to. Bellies were ripped open for entrails to spill out. Hairs from the heads were plucked out. They were hanged and bullets pumped into their bodies. Kidneys were extracted from the victims and offered to their parents to chew them at pain of death. Brains were hammered. All barbaric.
Torture deaths have been brought about by the following cruel and savage practices:

1. Hanging

2. Burning alive
3. Strangulation by steel wires
4. Draining of blood in hospitals
5. Drowning alive
6. Beating to death
7. Dragging to death
8. Breaking of body parts
9. Dismemberment of body
10. Slicing
11. Fleecing
12. Gouging of eye balls
13. Branding with red-hot iron bars
14. Impaling
15. Slaughter

In absence of government computations about the killings of Kashmiri Pandits, Sikhs and other Hindus, private agencies and non-government organizations have put the number of Hindus of all shades who have been killed at 2,500 out of which Kashmiri Pandits stand out with a figure of eighteen hundred and odd. The Report submitted to the National Human Rights Commission by PKM has put the figures of killed Pandits at 319 till October, 1990. B.N. Nissar, editor of the Kashyapvani, has issued out a list of 765 Kashmiri Pandits who were brutally massacred. As per him twenty two ladies were raped and killed, sixty-six males were kidnapped and released which included Vijay Koul, director of the Regional Institute of Science and Technology and Dr. A.K. Dhar, director of the Regional Research Laboratory, eighteen were hanged to death, twenty-five ladies were raped and let off, eight were strangulated, hundred twenty- four were kidnapped and killed and sixty were
critically wounded and died for want of media laid. No fewer than fifty seven sikhs have been killed. It is said that many a mass massacre of Kashmiri Pandits of Sangrampora dimension was suppressed and not leaked to the press under the instuructions of the then Home Minister of India.
The following persons belonging to the minority community of Hindus especially the Kashmiri Pandits as infidels have been tortured and killed by the methods mentioned above :
Tika Lal Taploo

Name: Tika Lal Taploo
Fathers Name: Pandit Nand Lal Taphoo
Date of Birth: 6th Oct, 1927
Date of Assassination: 14th September,1989
Residence: Chinkral Mohalla, Habba Kadal, Srinagar
Survived by Wife (50), Sons (24, 21), Daughter (27)
Tika Lal Taploo was a lawyer by profession and had been in politics for long. He had fought electicons to the J&K Legislative Assembly a number of times but could not make it to the Assembly because of the jerrymandering of the Assembly segment he would usually tight elections from. He enjoyed immense popularity as a social and political activist. He was put to bullets by the armed killers of JKLF. His assassination came as a shock to large sections of Kashmiri population. His funeral procession was stoned by the Muslim rebids and was attended among others by Kedar Nath Sahni and L. K. Advani as he was the Vice President of the J&K Unit of Bhartiya Janata Party. The Muslims downed the shutters of their shops as a mark of respect to the martyr, but they had to re-open their shops when issued commands not to mourn the death of a Kafir.
Nila Kanth Ganjoo

Name: Nila Kanth Ganjoo
Father's Name: Mahadev Ganjoo
Date of Assassination: 4th October,1989
Residence: Karan Nagar, Srinagar
Survived by wife (70), sons (51,49), daughter (55)
Nila Kanth Ganjoo was an ax-Sessions Judge with lots of legal acumen. He had emerged as a detestable person for the Muslim secessionists as and when he heard the case of Maqbool Butt who was accused of murder of an intelligence officer, Amar Chand and on the basis of the evidence collected and deposed in the case had ordered the execution of the accused. The accused had gone in appeal against his judgment, but the death sentence was upheld even by the apex court. Ganjoo lived under constant threat of life. His house was raided and bombed umpteen times and the government had set up a police post at his house. With the rise of militarised Islam in Kashmir he was put to bullets on a busy road in Srinagar in broad daylight by the JKLF assassins. His body lying in a pool of blood was not even covered. Police prevaricated to arrive on the scene. Killers had left a note on his body warning anyone against picking it up. Ganjoo was killed in cold blood because he
was a Kashmiri Pandit. The twenty-two witnesses who had recorded their evidence in the case were all Muslims and they were not murdered or even hurt. Instead they were amnestyed. The Justice of the High court who had heard the appeal in the case was also a Muslim. He was not killed for upholding the decision of the Sessions Court. Abdul Gani Lone, said to be a corrupt stooge of some foreign powers, is believed to be behind all the raids and bombing attacks on his residence.
Sarwanand Koul "Premi", Virendra Koul

Sarwanand Koul "Premi"

Virendra Koul
Name: Sarwanand Koul "Premi" and Virendra Koul
Father's Name: Gopi Nath Koul
Date of Birth: 9.6.1926/4.5.1962
Date of Assassination: 30.4.1990
Residence: Sofshalli, Anantnag
Survived by wife (60), son (35), daughter (26)
"Premi" was a poet and scholar. He stuck to his hamlet despite the rise in terrorism. He had the psyche of a teacher in believing that he would withstand the Islamic hurricane as he had taught every dog in and around the belts of his village and hence could not be so ungrateful as to bite him to death. But things proved otherwise. The Muslim terrorists entered his house on 28th April, 1990 and ordered all the members of his family to get collected in one room alongwith the ornaments and moneys, shawls and precious clothes. Whatever precious they had in their home was offered to the killers-curn-looters. The ornaments that the ladies were putting on were also cruelly snatched. Stuffing their booties in one suitcase Premi was ordered to carry it and follow them for a word just a small distance away from his house. The members of his family wailed and moaned. The killers assured them that he would return safe and unharmed. His son insisted upon accompanying
his old father. "If you wish, you may also accompany him", said the killers. The treatment that was meted out to the father and his son can shame even the worst Muslim tyrants. The spot where Premi would put his tilak mark was nailed. He was tortured by burning bits of cigarettes. The limbs of his body were broken. His eyes were gouged out. He was hanged from a tree and bullets were fired on him. His son was put to the same orgy of torture and death.
Bansi Lal Sapru
Name: Bansi Lal Sapru
Father's Name: Keshav Nath Sapru
Date of Birth: 30.2.1945
Date of Assassination: 24.4.1990
Residence: Gulab Bagh, Srinagar
Survived by wife (37), Sons (16 and 13)
He was accosted at the gate of his house by some neighbours and was carried along into his own orchard for a word. Three shots were pumped into him from close range. One shot struck his head. He fell dead and was found wallowing in his own pool of blood. His family screamed in pain and agony but nobody came even to console them.
Radha Krishen Kaw

Name: Radha Krishen Kaw
Father's Name: Balbhadher Kaw
Date of Birth: 18.5.1931
Date of Assassination: 24.8.1990
Residence: Kralkhud, Srinagar
Survived by wife (54), mother (75), daughter (35), son (3)
He was a veteran teacher and had retired as a Tehsil Education Officer. He all through his career had taught thousands of Muslim scholars and was busy in the teaching processes even after his retirement. The Muslim assassins entered the school where he was teaching a class and forcibly took him out from the back door of the school and sprayed him over with bullets. He was said to be massacred by the JKLF murderers.
Ashwani Kumar Garyali

Name: Ashwani Kumar Garyali
Father's Name: Shamboo Nath Garyali
Date of Birth: 23.4.1965
Date of Assassination: 24.6.1990
Residence: Chattabal, Srinagar
Survived by father (70), mother (60), brother (26), sister (22)
He was a bright and budding boy and was doing chartered accountancy. Five masked menaffiliated with JKLF entered his room where he was studying and blamed him for being an informer. They carried him down to the first floor of his own residence and pumped five bullets into his head and abdomen. He was immediately rushed to SMHS Hospital, Srinagar for surgery. The doctors refused to admit him. He was carried to the Institute of Medical Sciences, Soura where doctors did not bother to attend on him and allowed him to die. He was sent to the Jawahar Lal Nehru Memorial Hospital, Rainawari for post-mortem where his relatives allege that they had to wait for hours on end and were asked to pay money for the routine. His parents strongly believe that had he been operated upon in SMHS Hospital in time he would have survived the trauma. Garyali's father weeping and wailing had rushed to the local police station for a vehicle to carry him to hospital. The SHO, a
Muslim, avoided and the poor father went on begging him for a vehicle. He severely taunted the Pandit, who, perhaps, did not realise that he was relishing his distress to the last dregs of it.
Mrs. Sheela Koul (Tiku)

Name: Sheela Koul (Tiku)
Husband's Name: Pran Nath Tiku
Date of Birth: December 1942,
Date of Assassination: 31.10.1989
Residence: Dalhasanyar, Srinagar
She was genial tempered house-wife looking after her family with love and affection. On the fateful day she had gone to see her brother at Shivapora, Srinagar. While returning home at dusk she was put to bullets at Habbakadal bridge. She was brought home on a hand-cart as three-wheelers suddenly stopped plying on the route. The taxi-wallahs on road refused to carry her to the hospital. Despite repeated phone calls to the SMHS Hospital, Srinagar, the ambulance failed to arrive. She was carried to the hospital on a folding bed where she was left unattended. She vas shot in the chest and had a head injury. The JKLF terrorists are said to be her killers.
Pushker Nath Razdan

Name: Pushker Nath Razdan
Father's Name: Tika Lal Razdan
Date of Birth: 18.3.1943
Date of Assassination: 12.10.1990
Residence: Khonmuha, Pulwama
Survived by wife (43), sons (23,20), daughter (16)
Some terrorists under masks barged into his house at 9 in the night and straightaway knocked him down and dragged him out. He was shot at the left side of his chest. His wife and others in the family wept and wailed, but nobody came to their rescue. Ultimately he was carried to the Army Hospital at Badami Bagh in Srinagar where he was operated upon. He failed to survive the fatal wounds even after surgery. The policemen from the Pantachauk Police-Station arrived on the scene after he was cremated. He was allegedly killed by the Hizbul Mujjahideen hounds.
Prem Nath Bhat

Name: Prem Nath Bhat
Father's Name: Laxman Ji Bhat
Date of Birth: 5.12.1932
Date of Assassination: 27.12.1989
Residence: Anantnag
Survived by wife (52), sons (42,38), daughter (31)
He was a prominent lawyer enjoying immense popularity and confidence of all communities. Having attended the court for the day he was returning to his home when the Muslim terrorists pumped bullets straight into his head. Muslims in the neighbourhood of the lane where he was murdered in cold blood sadistically chuckled and whispered, "Another is felled." Though popular with the Muslims nobody even offered condolences on his brutal killing. Instead it was hailed as a tremendous triumph of Islam and Nizam-e-Mustafa.
He was a superb writer, orator and above all a nationalist with visions of India resurrected and reconstructed on the cultural and spiritual heritage of India. As an ardent votary of unity in diversity he opposed all barriers of segregation built by communal, casteist and obscurantist forces. He unflinchingly stood for positive ideololgy of national integrity which he was pained to see wilting under the leadership of forces self-serving and with infirn1 commitments.
The religious rites required to be performed on the tenth day could not be performed. All Kashmiri Pandits were scared, frightened and terrorised and the administration deliberately posed to be in deep coma. Despite curfew the terrorists disrupted the last rites on tenth day and planted a bomb in the courtyard of the house during the period of mourning. The family was forced to migrate to Jammu in view of threats doled out to it.
A JKLF hound, Manzoor-ul-Islam, is facing trial for his murder.
Makhan Lal Raina
Name: Makhan Lal Raina
Father's Name: Gopi Nath Raina
Date of Birth: 23.3.1938
Date of Assassination: 22.6.1990
Residence: Kharyar, Srinagar
Survived by wife (42), daughter (22), son (20), father (80), mother (68)
He was a medical assistant posted at the dispensary at Khan Sahib in Badgam. He was quite popular with the local Muslims for the services he would be rendering them. He was picked up from the dispensary itself in presence of nine Muslims. Nobody came to his rescue. He was brutally tortured and finally shot dead. His dead body was said to have been chopped and hurled away and finally recovecred from Dardpora in Badgam. He is allegedly killed by the JKLF murderers.
Chand Ji Kher

Name: Chand Ji Kher
Father's Name: Dina Nath Kher
Date of Birth: 2.3.1972
Date of Assassination: 17.7.1990
Residence: Vessu, Anantnag
Survived by mother (55), sister (35)
He was a young boy in his teens. He was called out by his Muslim friends who shot at him and buzzed off the scene. He was poor and indigent and had returned to his native hamlet for sale of his bits of property. He had nothing to fall back upon except a stretch of land that had helped him to eke out his existence. Hard pressed by poverty he went back from Jammu to Vessu where the Muslim killers snatched his life.
Raj Nath Dhar

Name: Raj Nath Dhar
Father's Name: Dina Nath Dhar
Date of Birth: 7.8.1931
Date of Assassination: 30.6.1990
Residence: Qutub-ub-din pore, Alikadal, Srinagar
Survived by mother (70), sister (40), brother (32)
He was a retired person in his fifties. Some terrorists entered his house and fired at him. His old and ailing mother cried and screamed for assistance, but nobody turned up to comfort her in grief and depression. He was shifted to SMHS Hospital, Srinagar where he died for want of proper care and aid.
Zinda Lal Pandita
Name: Zinda Lal Pandita
Father's Name: Prakash Ram Pandita
Date of Birth: 4.4.1931
Date of Assassination: 6.10.1990
Residence: Bagatpora, Handwara
Survived by wife (50), son (30)
He was kidnapped from his residence and strangulated with steel wires in an orchard and was said to be the handiwork of JKLF murderers.
Jagar Nath Pandita

Name: Jagar Nath Pandita
Father's Name: Ganesh Das Pandita
Date of Birth: 17.11.1943
Date of Assassination: 7.10.1990
Residence: Bagatpora, Handwara
Survived by mother (62), sons (23 and 20)
He was a widower and was kidnapped from his house and taken to the thick grooves of his own orchard where he was strangulated with steel wires. His killing took place during the intervening night of 7th and 8th October, 199().
Omkar Nath Wali

Name: Omkar Nath Wali
Father's Name: Parmanand Wali
Date of Birth: 4.5.1935
Date of Assassination: 2.1.1991
Residence: Chak-i-Rajwati, Vessu, Anantnag
Survived by wife (50), son (28), daughters (24 and 22)
He was an assistant sub-inspector of police posted at District Police Lines, Anantnag. His family was in Jammu when he was kidnapped and shot dead. No last rites were performed. No FIR was filed. It is alleged that his own colleagues in the Police Lines were responsible for his murder by being hand in glove with the JKLF hounds. His killing needs an enquiry.
Kanya Lal Peshin

Name: Kanya Lal Peshin
Father's Name: Kanth Ram Peshin
Date of Birth: 4.10.1937
Date of Assassination: 18/19.10.1991
Residence: Pazalpora, Bandipora
Survived by wife (48), sons (24 and 18), daughter (16)
He was a poor farmer and was kidnapped from his house at 9 in the night. He was taken 3 kilometres away from his own village and was brutally tortured. It is said that pins were driven into his nails and more than one metre of cloth was stuffed into his mouth to stifle him to death. His dead body was found at Ajar, Bandipora. He was said to have been killed by the assassins of Hizbul Mujahideen.
Gopi Nath Raina
Name: Gopi Nath Raina
Father's Name: Govind Ram Raina
Date of Birth: 1.1.1941
Date of Assassination: 7.7.1990
Residence: Manigam, Ganderbal
Sunrived by wife (45), daughters (28,20,l7,l5,l2)
He was running a medical shop at Kangan and being a Pandit was suspected of having the credentials of an informer, an alibi to kill him. It was in his own shop that he was put to bullets. His brutal murder was owned by Hizbul Mujahideen through the Kashmir Times and the Aftab two dailies published from Jammu and Srinagar respectively.
Ashok Kumar Bazaz
Name: Ashok Kumar Bazaz
Father's Name: Ram Joo Bazaz
Date of Birth:
Date of Assassination:
Residence: Baghi Sunder Balla Chattabal
Survived by wife and seven daughters (19,16,13,11,7,5,3)
.He was in his thirties whenhe was shot dead by the Muslim terrorists. He was a petty shop-keeper dealing in groceries. He was accused of being an informer and an agent of India. As the father of seven daughters he should have been spared and shown compassion. But the terrorists emptied of such human empathies and values and thus reduced to the level of barbarity killed him in cold blood The poor and miserable wife of the deceased asked the Muslim killers to massacre the whole family as their breadearner had been snatched from them. She was told that they were spared to weep and wail and atone for the sins of having carried Kashmir to the fold of India.
Attar Singh
Name: Attar Singh
Father's Name: Fateh Singh
Date of Birth: 11.4.1929
Date of Assassination: 26.7.1990
Residence: Saimnoo, Kulagam
Survived by sons (36,30,20), daughters (28,26)
He was an ex-serviceman. He was suspected of being an informer. He was employed at the branch office of the Hindustan Petroleum in Pulwama. After his duty hours he was returning home and the armed Muslim gangsters shot him dead. No Sikh-Muslim terrorist pact could save him. When informed of the killing, Samranjit Singh Mann was said to have felt sorry for the failure of the unholy pact that he had forged with the Muslim killers.
Maheshwar Nath Bhat
Name: Maheshwar Nath Bhat
Father's Name: Zana Bhat
Date of Birth: 20.6.1921
Date of Assassination: 15.10.1990
Residence: Hazuri Bagh, Srinagar
Survived by wife (65), son (35), daughters (30,27,24)
It was exactly at 8 in the morning that the Muslim killers numbering three forcibly barged into his house and started making enquiries about his son-in-law, an officer in the Department of Forests. They were told that he had migrated to Jammu much earlier and the fact of the matter was that he had returned to join his office on promotion as ACF at the behest and on the assurances of his Muslim colleagues with whom he had maintained close contacts. During the period of enquiries his son-in-law hid himself in a bath-room which he had bolted. Frustrated at not getting the prize catch the Muslim killers opened a volley of fire killing Maheshwar Nath on the spot, injuring his old and ailing wife who in a state of unconsciousness was hospitalised at Badami Bagh where she was given treatment and shifted to Jammu under security cover. His relation was also admitted to the same hospital where he succumbed to his bullet wounds.
Shiban Kishen Koul
Name: Shiban Kishen Koul
Fathers Name: Radha Krishen Koul
Date of Birth: 13.5.1953
Date of Assassination: 15/16.7.1990
Residence: Ashmuji, Kulgam, Anantnag
Survived by wife (35), mother (55), son (15), daughter (13)
He was a primary school teacher teaching Muslim learners with all his dedication. But he was a threat to Islam and hence was slaughtered on the uneven and pot-holed paths of his native hamlet. His father was also slaughtered the next day. His assassins were his neighbours whom he might have taught the first alphabets. This was how he was recompensed by the Muslim ungratefuls.
Dilip Kumar

Name: Dilip Kumar
Father's Name: Mohan Lal
Date of Birth: 8.7.1962
Date of Assassination: 19.5.1990
Residence: Mujamarag, Shopian Pulwama
Survived by mother (55), brothers (26,18,15)
He was un-employed and unmarried too. His father had died long back and the responsibility of the family and its management was on his green shoulders. He possessed a bit of ancestral land and looked after it to eke out an existence. But he was a Kafir and therefore could not be spared. The Muslim killers knocked at his door and as the atmosphere was surcharged with fear and panic his mother came out to tell the killers that Dilip was not home. But that would not break their bloody resolve. They waited outside the house for a while and ultimately broke open the door and dragged him out and carried him off as a prize catch. His mother beating her breast followed the killers who foul-mouthed the hapless lady. His brother rushed to the nearby police station for help, but no help came from that quarter. Dilip was extremely tortured. His dentures were hammered out and twelve bullets pumped into him and he was hung from a tree with a letter pinned on his
chest. The letter said that any person who dared lift the body would be paid one lakh. His body was cremated by police.
Manmohan Bachloo
Name: Manmohan Bachloo
Father's Name: Janki Nath Bachloo
Date of Birth: 5.12.1963
Date of Assassination: 18.5.1990
Residence: Qazihama, Baramulla
Survived by Father (67), mother (56), sisters (25,23,19)
He was in his twenties and was posted at Karnah as a Postal Assistant in the Postal Department. He came to his native town on a holiday. His having left for Baramulla was conveyed through their accomplices to the Muslim killers who were waiting for his arrival. In fact one of the killers was said to be following him from Karnah itself. When he reached home, a killer called at his house and carried him along for a cup of tea at a tea-shop in the heart of Baramulla town. Unsuspecting Manmohan accompanied his Muslim friend with whom he had frisked and frolicked in his boyhood days. When he entered the tea shop, other killers waiting for him hit him with bullets. He died then and there only. It is a classical case of treachery practiced by the Muslim.
Veer Ji Bhat

Name: Veer Ji Bhat
Father's Name: D.N.Bhat
Date of Birth: 31.1.59
Date of Assassination: 13.5.1990
Residence: Nagam, Badgam
Survived by wife (30), daughter (5), son (3), father (60), mother (58)
He was a young man of bubbling spirits with a bright career He was employed as a Junior Engineer in the State Irrigation Department and was posted at Shopian. He was a social activist helping everyone in distress and difficulty. On the fateful day he was out in the market of his locality. He talked to his friends in his usual aplomb. Suddenly a bunch of hounds arrived in a car and sprayed a shower of bullets over him. Despite profuse bleeding he did not give in and caught hold of one of the killers. But his armed accomplices put bullets into him felling him in his own pool of blood. The killers ran off. It happened in presence of everybody. The Pandits totally scared bolted their doors and windows and the Muslim majority flaunted V-signs in all hilarity. He was carried to SMHS Hospital where a doctor operated upon him and declared him out of danger. But after half an hour a man from the theatre declared him dead. Removing the white cloth from his face
his relatives found him snow white and that triggered the charge that the accomplices of the killers nestling the Hospital had drained out his blood.
Ashok Kumar
Name: Ashok Kumar
Father's Name: Basker Nath
Date of Birth: 2.5.1963
Date of Assassination: 13.5.1990
Residence: Pulwama
Survived by father (55), mother (54), sisters (30 and 24)
He was unemployed and unmarried too. He was kidnapped by the hounds of Hizbul Mujjahideen who were imparted first lessons in Muslim bigotry by the beard flaunting Ali Shah Gilani. His hands and feet were broken and was taken to the main crossing of the road. The hounds replicating Nadir Shah and Mohmmad Gori plucked out his eye-balls with iron rods in presence of hundreds of Muslims who here seen relishing the barbarity inflicted on a Kafir. Ultimately he was put to a barrage of bullets killing him in no time. Among the spectators there was a bard who sang "Islam is glorious and great."
Ajay Kapoor
Name: Ajay Kapoor
Father's Name: Shiva Nath Kapoor
Date of Birth: 16.7.1940
Date of Assassination: 1.12.1989
Residence: Old Postoffice, Sr. Gunj Srinagar
Survived by wife (47), son (25), daughter (15)
He was a God fearing businessman. His bright and genial looking countenance would be usually marked with a tilak. It was in his own locality where his family had been living from generations that he was showered a volley of bullets. Groaning and moaning he fell dead. It was a cold blooded murder. His dead body was not lifted for hours or end.
Surinder Kumar Raina
Name: Surinder Kumar Raina
Father's Name: Jia Lal Raina
Date of Birth: 19.3.1967
Date of Assassination: 2.5.1990
Residence: Tullamulla, Ganderbal
Survived by sisters (35,21), brothers (27,14)
He was in his twenties and an orphan. He was a lift-man in the Institute of Medical Sciences, Soura and was kidnapped while performing his duties. All Muslims present on the scene presented a spectacle of cheer and song. He was put to bullets on a road named after the legendary physician, Ali Jan, who despite his brilliance in the field of medicine allowed the Medical Institute, Soura to get transformed into a snake-pit of Muslim bigotry and fanaticism.
Surinder Kumar Koul

Name: Surinder Kumar Koul
Father's Name: Som Nath Koul
Date of Birth: 4.5.1971
Date of Assassination: 26.8.1991
Residence: Batagund, Handwara
Survived by father (50), mother (45), brother (30), sister (33)
The whole family had shifted to Jammu in the wake of Muslim terrorism. The young boy at the age of twenty, therefore, a green "horn, had received a call-letter for an interview for the post of a teacher for which he had applied when he was home. He is said to have been in contact with his Muslim friends who had encouraged him to return at least for the interview and assured him of full safety. Against the advice of his parents he left for Srinagar. When he de-boarded the bus at Srinagar, the same Muslim hounds who had assured him of safety kidnapped him. Putting him to detestable pains and agonies, he was finally put to bullets at Langet. What a treachery!
Ravinder Kumar Pandita

Name: Ravinder Kumar Pandita
Father's Name: Nanak Chand Pandita
Date of Birth: 4.10.1958
Date of Assassination: 25.4.1990
Residence: Mattan, Anantnag
Survived by wife (30), mother (60), daughters (4,6,6(twins))
He was working in the Telecommunication Department on daily wages. He was poor and bereft and lived in absolute indigence. But he was Ravinder Kumar, therefore a Kafir and agent of India. While returning home from his work place, the Muslim terrorists lying in wait for him shot him from close range. He fell dead then and there and in utter glee the killers danced over his dead body and the murderous scene was witnessed by hundreds of Muslims who could be seen emptied of human compassion though taught as a religious value.
Bushan Lal Koul

Name: Bushan Lal Koul
Father's Name: Shridhar Koul
Date of Birth: 14.6.1948
Date of Asassination: 16.5.1990
Residence: Amnoo, Kulagam, Anantnag
Survived by wife (37), son (19)
He was a government employee. He was kidnapped and strangulated with steel wires. He was allegedly killed by the Hizbul Mujahideen hounds.
D.P. Khazanchi

Name: D.P. Khazanchi
Father's Name: Damodar Khazmanchi
Date of Birth: 6.10.1939
Date of Assassination: 6.10.90
Residence: Kaniya Kadal, Srinagar
Survived by wife (48), son (22), daughter (18)
He was a professor of Physics, a good teacher, cool, calm and soft spoken. But as ill-luck would have it he was lost to sanity. As he would be raving and loitering about, the Muslim killers pumped bullets into him killing him instantaneously. The militarised Muslim bigotry did not spare even an insane for the fact of his being a kafir and threat to Islam.

(and many many more... Read On and On)

Jul 7, 2009

A Place to Die

by Dr K L Choudhury

Cancer is a horrific disease; terminal cancer is death waiting in the shadows. Waiting, yet in no hurry to pounce on its victim and gobble it up. It goes about its work leisurely and kills at its own pleasure. Like the wily cat does with the mouse, catching it in its paws only to let go for a while, tantalizing and terrorizing, turning and twisting , throwing up and dashing down, enough to mesmerize and paralyze but not hard enough to kill. By then the victim is prostrate and helpless, begging mercy, waiting for release that comes only when death is ready to embrace him and not the other way round.

I knew Omkar Nath from the time he came to me in 1975 with his pretty little daughter, Nimmi, who was suffering from pleural tuberculosis. That was nearly two and half decades back. Subsequently he got his son, Dileep, to me whom I diagnosed rheumatic heart disease; and then his wife, who suffered from a duodenal ulcer. Since then I was their family physician and friend till the times when the happy valley was overtaken by a cataclysm that bruised and sundered human relationships and drove hundreds of thousands into exile.

Omkar Nath landed in Jammu in the first wave of exodus in the winter of 1989-90. He was one of the estimated three hundred and fifty thousand Pandits who were hounded out in the terror that took the valley of Kashmir in its deathly grip. Exodus scattered the Pandits like people in a shipwreck. Some where drowned in the first storm of violence, others found rafts that carried them to far off lands, yet others are still floating in the choppy sea trying to come ashore.

Within a few weeks of his arrival in Jammu, Omkar Nath took ill and his family found itself miserably alone and helpless. They had lost contact with most of their relatives and friends. They looked for me but did not know that I was still in Srinagar. Much later, in May 1990, I moved to Delhi spending eight trying months there before I migrated to Jammu. By that time he had been going from one doctor to another, not knowing anyone in the host city.

Soon after I settled down in Jammu, word went round in the refugee camps, and patients started pouring in. The family finally found me out and brought him to my rented lodgings at New Plots.

Omkar Nath had never been ill since I knew him. He was always sparsely built, lean, and sallow complexioned. But now I could barely recognize him. He was run down and had acquired a darker tan, partly from the sun and partly from disease. He stooped with pain, his eyes proptosed with fear and he looked a shadow of his old self - a distorted, dwarfed shadow. He wore an unmistakable cancer visage. By the time I heard his story the visage grew larger and when I finished with his examination it became more real than life. He had already developed metastasis in his liver. It was the beginning of the end.

Without much ado I divulged the prognosis to his rheumatic-heart-afflicted son, Dileep. By now he had exploited all his reserves of energy and financial resources and, though the revelation that his father would not last long came as a shock, he could not hide a sense of relief. Sometimes relief from knowledge of the worst is better than the torture of suspense. Now he was free to organize the ritual of terminal care without having to run after doctors and subjecting him to unending lab tests, ultrasounds and x-rays.

Our plan was to make the patient as much pain free as possible and let him die in peace. But peace has so many variables like a complex equation. There is the outer peace that comes from outside influences; in this case, the place one lives in, the attitude of care givers, the attending doctors, and visitors. And there is the inner peace which is hard to define and harder to attain. How was peace to come to one suffering from the grinding pain of terminal cancer, condemned to exile, without a roof on his head, and no place to die?

When his condition deteriorated and his relatives came to learn of his illness they started pouring in. Most of them were refugees who had fled Kashmir like him and had little else to do except to search for their lost tribes and to exchange notes of the travails they had to go through the elaborate formalities to register as ‘migrants’ with the relief authorities, scouring for shelter, finding schools for their children, hunting jobs for themselves, establishing new contacts, striking new roots. The least they could do was to visit each other, and share their cups of sorrow.

The landlord was unhappy when he estimated the number of people visiting his sick tenant everyday from the number of footwear that they would take off outside the room he had rented out to Omkar Nath and his family of four - his wife, son and a daughter. He did not like crowds in his already cramped house. The common corridor to his own rooms and to the room he had rented out to the family, and the only restroom for his own use as well as for his tenants, could not accommodate the additional traffic of numerous visitors. The place was getting choked. He gave them notice of one month to find alternative accommodation.

The family could not stop visitors; that was not done in our part of the world. We do not shut our doors to monks, mendicants or mongrels; there is no question shutting it to relatives, friends and well wishers. But the landlord saw no logic in this argument and asked them to quit. They offered higher rent. No, he had made up his mind.

Dileep went from door to door to find a place but there was no available space. The family had found the present accommodation in Sarwal without any difficulty, being amongst the early ‘migrants’. Now, Jammu was bursting at the seams with the refugee avalanche from Kashmir that settled itself at all conceivable space in houses, stables, cellars, store rooms, dungeons. The rents had hit the roof and were touching the sky. The tents provided by the administration were all taken. Some old and dilapidated buildings were thrown open to accommodate the rush. Those who found no place in Jammu moved on to neighboring towns - Samba, Kathua, Kistawar, Doda, Kud, Batote. Many others filtered to Punjab, Himachal and Haryana. A lot more moved to Delhi and the rest to other metropolis. The scatter became wide in no time as the exodus from Kashmir caught momentum parallel with the escalation of violence and terror.

As the deadline drew to a close and frustration mounted, Dileep met an old friend by chance who knew of a family with a spare room and asked him to have a look. It was an ill-ventilated room in a dilapidated house in the innermost recesses of the old city accessed through narrow lanes where pedestrians had to squeeze themselves to avoid brushing against each other. But beggars cannot be choosers. Dileep hoped his family would somehow tide over the stormy end in this bleak retreat.

That was a false hope, though. It was literally moving from the frying pan into fire. Omkar Nath deteriorated rapidly. He became claustrophobic in this dark, damp room. The plaster was peeling off the walls, sculpting monstrous shapes that took the visage of Yama and frightened him. A small window in a wrought iron frame looked out at the dingy lane outside, bringing in stench from the drains. He asked them to keep it shut. But summer made it hotter inside. The fan, the only means available to beat the heat, made it worse, for it blew gusts of hot air on his already febrile frame.

Were these the burning fires of hell that he had heard about? How long had he to go through the agony before the end came? Was he really dying? His thoughts often wandered to his past. Back home, he had lived from hand to mouth right from his childhood, yet always in contentment. His father had left him a modest dwelling and a small front yard with a solitary pomegranate tree and a flower bed where he planted marigolds for his gods. He offered them fresh when they bloomed and dried the reminder for winter use. There was a rose bush near the porch which he doted upon like his own children. He had worked hard to provide education for his son and daughter. But there was still unfinished family responsibility that plagued his troubled soul. Dileep, an agricultural graduate was jobless, and Nimmy, a commerce student, without a trousseau, yet to be married off. What tortured him most was the thought of his wife, much younger than him, donning the mantle of widowhood. He wanted to go back to Kashmir and die there in his ancestral home. And he repeated his wish every day to his family: “It is better to face the bullets in Kashmir than the living hell here.”

The pain grew and Omkar Nath groaned day and night. Painkillers that I prescribed did not seem to work. Pethidine, morphine and other narcotic drugs were banned from sale because the city youth would lap them up from the pharmacies before it reached the deserving patients. The substance abusers resorted to cough mixtures with codeine as an ingredient. That too was banned. I was left with no choice except to prescribe heavy doses of sedatives and available pain killers, with little effect. The pain came in fits and spasms and he whined like a bitten dog, rousing the whole neighborhood. His anguished cries tore the stillness of night and it was not long before the landlord complained to the family.
“Your patient is howling all the time. Pray who is treating him?”
He was told that their patient was in the best hands, but he was not impressed with my name.
“I have never heard of him. Why don’t you go and get a local specialist. Your patient may be suffering from some regional affliction which your doctor has not come across so far. The ‘migrant’ doctors will take time before they get acquainted with the problems specific to this place. I would suggest you get Doctor Gandotra; he is the best in town.”

Dileep had no choice but to keep his landlord in good humor. He found the doctor’s address and brought him to see his father. The patient was not happy with a doctor whom he did not know, with whom he could neither communicate freely in his own language nor strike a wavelength that is so vital in healing. But he was asked to bear with this arrangement. The doctor ordered some more tests and prescribed a different set of medicines.

Dileep rushed to me with the new prescription asking me what he was to do. Normally I leave it to the choice of the patient and his attendants to exercise their own discretion if they invite more opinions on a patient under my care. But this was no time to take offence. Here was this desperate young man having to make all decisions at a tender age and me as his only hope. The family was left with scarce resource for the luxury of unnecessary tests and cancer medication which would be, in my opinion, futile at best and painful at worst. Medical ethics does not justify meddling with a dying patient, or trying questionable remedies without his consent. Death, when its time has come, should be welcome. In trying to prolong life in such irredeemable situations, we might make it more insufferable. Therefore, it was alright to have brought the doctor home to satisfy the whim of the landlord but that is where the farce should stop.

Omkar Nath was wasting away fast. Days and nights merged into each other in a miasma of nausea, retching, pain, and passing out from sheer exhaustion. He developed jaundice from cancer invasion into the bile channels and his complexion took an eerie hue of black and yellow. The landlord sensed the specter of death in the room. The doctor he had recommended had failed. It made him uncomfortable as the specter grew bigger every day threatening to shroud his own dwelling. He did not like the idea of his tenant dying in his house. He had learned of the elaborate Kashmiri Pandit rituals of death and the post funeral rituals extending beyond the days of mourning into the 10th day ceremony with all the relatives and friends gathered at the river ghat while the bereaved son goes through a tonsure and a clean shave, a dip in the water, and the immersion of rice balls and earthen pots, followed by three days of more elaborate yajnas - mini shraddhas -
that steer the deceased through his arduous journey in the world beyond and ensures a place in heaven. The fortnightly, monthly, six-monthly and yearly ceremonies would follow with unfailing regularity. No, he would not allow any of this in his house.

“Mr. Dileep, your father is getting worse every day. You will have to do something about it,” the landlord called him aside.
“I know. We tried everything, including the doctor you suggested, and even phanda, your local voodoo, at the behest of your wife.”
“But he is dying, can’t you see?”
“Yes, he is deteriorating fast. My mother keeps hoping but the doctors do not give him much of a chance.”
“You will have to quit before the time comes.”
“That cannot be. Where will we go with a dying man? You have been kind to let us your room; please bear with us a little longer.”
“I will not allow any mishap in my house. You must move before it is too late.”
“Give me a few days and I will start looking for room elsewhere.”
“Do it right away, before you find your belongings on the street.”

Dileep was on the hunt again for alternative lodgings. He sounded his relatives and friends; he went from door to door in the immediate neighborhood and in far away suburbs but drew a blank everywhere. The landlord visited his father every evening, saw death closing in, and repeated his threats. Dileep dared not show him his face and returned home much after the landlord had gone to bed.

Omkarnath lapsed into a twilight state alternating between drowsiness and light wakefulness. His son came rushing to me.
“Doctor, my father is sinking and the landlord wants us out before he attains nirvana. Please do something, try some miracle to keep him alive a little longer till I find a place for him to die. Please doctor, some glucose infusions, some untried remedy that sustains life a little longer.”
It was heart-wrenching. I had watched this young man grow from a kid, carrying the burden of an enlarged heart, and a larger family responsibility. I did not know how to help him but an idea flashed in my mind.
“Why don’t you give an ad in the paper? After all, there may be someone out there who has room to spare.”
“But we will have to keep quiet about my father’s illness. Who will let us room with the knowledge that we will be moving with a dying person?” he asked.
I scribbled on a piece of paper and handed it over to him. The ad appeared next day in the local newspaper.

Wanted: A Place to Die.
A family of four, one of them sick and dying, in desperate need of lodgings.
Size of accommodation and rent no consideration; just enough space to die.

I gave my phone for contact because the family did not own a phone.

When all hope is lost, there is hope lurking somewhere in the least expected place like a beautiful flower behind a boulder in a remote corner of the garden.
Sardar Gurbax Singh of Nanak Nagar phoned me the same evening. He had two rooms to let, would I care to have a look.
I sent for Dileep and directed him to the address. “Whatever the rent go ahead and clinch the deal,” I urged him.

Gurbax Singh was a jovial Sikh, the kindness of his heart matching the span of his moustache which he twirled after every sentence he spoke. He invited Dileep to a cup of tea before he showed him two well ventilated, lightly painted and furnished rooms. Dileep would not believe his eyes. The ideal place to live, he thought to himself; and to die.
He inquired about the rent.
“Who is bothered about the rent, young man? Pay whatever you think is right, and when you have the money. No advance, no security. And, no rent for the duration your father is alive. This is a matter of life and death and monetary transactions are unbecoming.”
Then, patting his back lightly, “I liked your frankness in the advertisement. Now, why did you have to mention about it?”
“My doctor wrote the ad for me. I hesitated for sometime before I gave it to the newspaper. He was right; I would not be able to face you if I carried a dying man into your house without your knowledge. You could deny us entry and we would be on the road. We have been turned out once and my present landlord is waiting hammer and tongs to knock us out of his house. Death is the last visitor anyone would want to ever see in one’s house.”
“And, yet, that is the very reason I lost no time in making contact. My rooms have been lying vacant for a long time and I had no idea to rent them out. I would do so only in very special circumstances. Well, my home is here to welcome death, if that is what you are bringing along with you. Everyone has to die one day, some sooner than later.” He twirled his moustache harder and let off a long sneeze as if in attestation of what he said.
“Go get your family, the dinner is on me tomorrow when you move in.”

Was it real or was he having a pleasant reverie? Dileep pinched his skin hard in his thigh from within the pockets of his trousers and almost gave a startle. He shook the Sardar’s hand so hard that his own started to ache and tears of gratitude rolled down his cheeks. He ran out of the house almost delirious with joy that his dear father would not die on the road but in the very congenial environs of an extraordinary man. He cried aloud, to the amazement of the passersby, “Jo bole so nihal, sat saria akal!”

Reaching home in that fit of excitement, Dileep rushed to his dying father and gently shook him out of stupor.
“We are returning home tomorrow,” he spoke near his ear.
Omkar Nath opened his eyes lightly, looked at his son in bewilderment, and closed them again as he started mumbling, “Home, home…” and relapsed into stupor.

Next day the family moved to Nanak Nagar and, first time in many days, stretched their limbs that had become cramped in a hell hole. It was after they settled in the rooms that Dileep’s mother threw open a window and saw a pomegranate tree in its second bloom in the front garden. She asked her son to seat his father in a chair and bring it near the window.
“We are home. That is your pomegranate tree. Look at the red flowers in bloom,” she pointed to the tree.
Omkar Nath opened his eyes wide, looked out, and held his right arm out to reach the tree. He touched a flower gently - the familiar inflorescence - smooth shiny tubular base with vermilion petals at the top. A strange light shone in his eyes and a flicker of a smile on his lips before he passed out again and was helped to the bed. On his dark and yellow face, now assuming a light vermilion hue like the flower he touched, there was deep contentment, the same that he had worn as a motif of his plain living all his life.

The following day, the lord of lords, deciding finally to embrace Omkar Nath, made the formal visitation and took his spirit away with reverence and care, to the chants of Om Nama Shivae and Sat saria akal as his head lay on the thigh of his son and the family helped him to the last mortal drink of holy water from the Ganges.
Peace prevailed in death.

The beneficent Sikh arranged everything that goes with the cremation and on the morrow he vacated the ground floor where he lived with his wife and went to his brother’s place for the next fortnight so that the tenets would observe the rituals without any let or hinder.

A Space to Die

‘Your father is sinking day by day.
Why don’t you change your doctor, say?
The refugee medics will take their time
to grasp the afflictions of this clime.
A phanda may help, or a mantra,
till you seek out Dr Gandotra.’
I had no choice but soon to call
the celebrated physician before nightfall
but father grew from bad to worse,
enfeebled, stuporous unable to nurse.

‘If all the measures fail to revive,
your patient may not long survive.
In view of his critical state
you better move before it’s too late.
I can allow a few days grace
till you find another place,
but no mishaps here in my residence,
no mourning, no impertinence.’

I rushed back to my own doctor
as the condition deteriorated from hour to hour.
‘Pray prolong his life a few days
till I shift to an alternate place.
Some shots, some freak remedies,
a little breather, a slender lease.’

Off I went from door to door
to rent a space just five by four,
where father may rest in peace awhile
ere Yama takes him from exile,
to where he wishes for ever to lie
in his native place, so glad to die.

From: “Of Gods, Men and Militants”
K L Chowdhury