poetry

By the road i stood

I stood watching,
watching where we are,
watching where we were.

By the road I stood
gasping, struggling,
reminding myself of Kashmir.

Where people were humane,
where discrimination was taboo,
where brotherhood prevailed,
where harmony ruled,
where corruption was a crime.

What could be done,
was done without money,
what couldn’t be done,
was never done with money.

By the road I stood,
it was not a common day,
cause Kashmir was missing,
cause Kashmir was lost.

Published in Kashmir Life, 2014

Non Fiction, politics

5 Reasons Why Kashmir movement will fail?

Learning from Indian National Movement!

After almost three decades the Kashmir Freedom movement stands no further than where it started. Every passing year is a mix of mass agitations, protests, hartals and then accepting the failure, only to rise again the next year. The surge of untamed energy of the youth goes down the gutter every year. The only outcome at the end is the addition to death toll, damage to public infrastructure, serious loss of human resource in terms of education and economic stability. But with every rising sun, the energy is refilled and a new protest is in the building. The question that thus arises is, “why continue on such a futile path, that leads to nowhere. ”

The answer lies in learning from the past. History is the best teacher, it is said. But the only thing one learns from history is “that no one learns form history”. The Kashmir Freedom movement is a poignant reflection of the Indian national movement. India as a vast nation took two centuries to become independent. But that was a time when all the present modern day inventions were not at their behest.

Continue reading “5 Reasons Why Kashmir movement will fail?”

poem, poetry

Ghosts of Freedom

I am not blind, no, I can see you
see you tear apart the scarf from her head,
I can see the bangles broken
Laying on the floor.
I can see your hand searching her,
her ripe bosom;
the lust in your eyes
is visible to me.
I can see the smile on your face,
full of disgusting pride you carry.

I can see, until I become one of those,
those hit with your pellets.
Those who can’t see!
And I will cease to see further.

But I will still be able to hear,
her screams,
the sound of the bangles falling upon the floor,
your laugh and furthermore,
the stories of my fellows;
seen with their eyes until every last
of them is hit with your pellets.

And when nobody is left
to hear or to see,
our ghosts will fight, for our
Aazadi*

*freedom

First published in WithKashmir.

poetry, politics

For Masrat et al.

Il miglior fabbro

Deep purple is not just a colour,
but an award, under our clothes,
that shines,
brightly but painfully,
awarded to the woke, for excellence
in resistance and dissidence.

How do you speak?
and why do you want to?
only inside the mouth,
a tongue is a tongue;
no bone, then how?
how do you make it stand
on its feet, and make it march,
restlessly and tirelessly.

What do you want to muckrake?
for expression is lost,
upon expressing, it ceases to be,
the moment a tide of reckoning hits it
with waves of misinterpretations
and it is pulled into the cesspool
of allegations and arguments, and is
trapped forever in the quagmire of
ambiguous desolations.

May-be you too are haunted,
by the ghosts of azaadi,
or may-be you are a troubled child,
of an unhappy marriage between
concealed fascism
and
divulged freethinking.

First published in The Universe Journal

Subsequently in Asian Speaks.

Photo by getty images.

RELIGION, SOCIAL WORK

Interfaith Marriages In kashmir.

Interfaith Marriages… The Real Story.

Image

Leave alone inter-faith marriages, in India inter-caste marriages are treated with much anxiety and a hostile outlook. It is a social taboo to marry out of your caste or religion. Talking about the Kashmir, a more backward area or India, where terrorism has made the life slow and dull, where development is a miss, the culture of inter-faith marriages is not yet accepted. We Indians are not so westernised that we would allow our children to marry whom-so-ever they want. We have special respect for our religion and want to keep our relations confined to own religion. From Kashmir the Hindus have already been forced to move out, they know live in exile suffering from a mass exodus. The cases of interfaith marriages are seen once in a blue moon. There have been some very interesting personalities which are exemplary in this segment. Omar Abdullah, the CM of the state has married a Hindu girl, Payal Nath. From the same family Omar Abdullah’s Sister Sarah Abdullah has married a Hindu boy, Sachin Pilot.

The lesser Known tales of misfortune!!

Similarly one Amina Yusuf of Kashmir and Rajnish Sharma of Jammu fell in love eight years ago in Gulmarg, they dreamt of a new life and a new Kashmir. By Amina’s own admission before the Jammu police and the media, the couple went on to marry against the wishes of the families and the diktats of their community leaders. But they could live together only for a few days. Rajnish was booked on the charge of kidnapping and forcibly marrying the 26-year-old Amina, aka Anchal Sharma post marriage. He was “picked up” by the cops on September 29 and found dead in the Srinagar police’s custody on October 4. `A judicial investigation is on in the case. Amina, after living with her in-laws for three months, returned to her parents’ house.

Talking to a senior police officer in this concern, he said that, “No community here wants its members to join another community after marriage. The community members fear that one by one, their numbers will dwindle and the demographic change can affect the separatist demand. Interestingly, parents don’t mind if their son brings a girl from another community and converts her. But when it comes to their daughters marrying outside the community, there is violence and bloodshed,” says former DGP M.M. Khajuria.

“What wrong did we do?” asks Shabnam with her husband Ravi Sharma (names changed) holding her hand tightly in their two-room rented house in the city. “We are both working in a multinational company. We liked each other, respect each other’s religion and told our parents of our decision to marry. But there was a volcano of a protest. We had no option but to elope. We got married but were caught. He was booked for kidnapping but the court came to our rescue. Now, we are living happily,” she says. Some even take the fight up to the Supreme Court. The case of a Muslim girl from Doda and a Hindu youth from Nagrota is a case in point. The apex court provided security to this love-lorn couple, hounded by relatives and cops. Anjum, 19, a Muslim from Doda, and Khemraj, 24, a Hindu from Nagrota, both belong to influential families. They are reportedly living in hiding.

Conversion after marriage becomes the main issue. The DGP remembers how a Sikh girl despite marrying a Muslim in England spent a torturous life for years. She wanted to follow her religion but there was opposition. She pulled along for a few years. But when it came to the children’s religion, she left the family.

That’s not the end, several cases go unreported, several are muted for the fear of insult and shame.

(Source: Tribuneindia, reports from various media channels.)