Apathy is the Word
Apathy is the Word
Over the Years
Vijay Dhar Sahib in Sehnsucht 1 for Heimat 2
Clenching his teeth and murmuring incessantly: Twenty Five Years of Exile, Govt. has been very indifferent and unjust to us all these years. They are devoid of will and genuine intent.
I yearn for my Home, I long for my Home. I yearn to roam through those lanes, I yearn for the little backyard garden of my house, I yearn for the brook running adjacent to my house, I yearn for the childhood memories of my house, I yearn for my father’s memories, I yearn for that giant walnut tree, for its branches hanging over the windows of my house, I yearn for its fruit. I yearn for that air, for that water, for that sky over my head, for that soil, for my motherland, for the land of my ancestors, for the land of my son, for my land. I’m left with decaying memories. I fear losing them all.
Political Organization (Commentary)
This is Government’s prime responsibility and our promise that this year will be much indifferent and more unjust to Pandits. “We are committed towards “dignified return” and rehabilitation of displaced Kashmiri Pandits in the valley.” We are preparing a vision document which identifies and certifies that Pandits are the original inhabitants of Kashmir, that they were forced to leave their homes, that they were murdered and massacred and the remaining of them were left to live a terrible life in tents and refugee camps under inhumane conditions.
We are constituting a tribunal comprising of intellectuals and scientists that will go to Kashmir for a month and visit the places where once Pandits lived; they will take soil samples from different places and the samples will be tested by Archaeological organizations to reaffirm that Pandits are the original inhabitants of the valley, that they lived here for centuries. Once confirmed, we will set up a team of intellectuals that will organize a meeting with the separatists; we will listen to what they say about our proposal regarding “dignified return” of Pandits to the valley. Once we are done with separatists, we will set up a team of more intellectuals that will meet the officials from the State Government and take their nod as well. If State Government agrees to the rehabilitation plan, we will prepare a blue print for the “dignified return” of Kashmiri Pandits to the valley and the Government will start identifying land for the Pandits.
A Month after (Commentary)
In context to our promise made to Kashmiri Pandits in reference to their “dignified return” to the valley, we held up meetings and seminars, committees were constituted and every stakeholder was taken into account, stakeholder i.e. the separatists, present State Govt. and intellectuals, some more intellectuals. The officials from the State Government are unable to locate land in the valley and in their document submitted to the Government, it has been clearly indicated that they need some more time (We guess; a decade) to identify “suitable land”. The separatists have put forward a more logical and more concerning aspect regarding “dignified return” of Kashmiri Pandits to the valley. They have submitted an 250 page document, voicing a genuine concern citing ecological threats that the valley will be exposed to, they write that the huge influx of Pandit population into the valley will raise the atmospheric temperature; thus proving detrimental for the valley and to the local population as well. They write that the conditions are not suitable for “dignified return” of Pandits to the valley.
Political Organization (Commentary)
We feel their pain and share their sorrows, our apathy for the plight of Pandits has grown from leaps to bounds in successive years and we are working on that. We are counseling our party leaders to be more sympathetic to your plight. We are trying to reason with your pain. Wishing you Pandits all the good luck for coming years. Please be brave and endure with us.
GOI (over the Years): 10 15 20 21 22 23 25. Keep coming, wish you strength to endure.
Friends and Neighbors (Yesteryear): The moment you utter exodus, I chew you down. I take offense. You were out for vacation! Damn it! Stop talking. Be silent.
700 of us murdered.
Friends and Neighbors (Yesteryear): Check stat; prove it, you wrong, its 2 short.
We are homeless.
Friends and Neighbors (Yesteryear): Please come back.
You burnt my Houses.
Friends and Neighbors (Yesteryear): Please come back…..Brother!
You looted our Houses
Friends and Neighbors (Yesteryear): Please come back…….Brother.
You hurled cries of abuses, jeered, mocked, you made me run.
Friends and Neighbors (Yesteryear): Please come back…..brother!
Friends and Neighbors (Yesteryear): You draw huge benefits from Government.
Yup, huge! 1600 a month.
Friends and Neighbors (Yesteryear): You with a big house in Jammu reaping benefits and packages from GOI.
Yeah, a big house on rent, in tent, then killer domes and now one room tenements; two they are, one divided in two..Yes! A big house, All the luxury and comforts.
I stand flabbergasted.
TV Show (Return of Pandits?)
Anchor: Can this year be different for Pandits. Is the Government going to facilitate their “dignified return” to valley?
Govt. Representative: Can we talk on any other issue or for any other community? Enough of these Pandits!
Anchor: Sir, the 30 minute show will discuss Pandits. It has been 10 years that we haven’t aired anything regarding Pandits.
Govt. Representative: We are committed to rehabilitate Pandits and are working towards their “dignified return” to the valley.
2015 marked 25th year of Exile of Kashmiri Pandits
Note: I find hope traversing through meadows, snow clad mountains, fresh water streams, apple orchards…… and then laid to suffer in the barren fields, I find hope withering around, I find hope being trampled upon. I find the political establishment of our country jeering on us.
1 : wistful Longing.
2 : place or land of birth, native land, land of my forefathers.
Sushant Dhar was born in Kashmir and currently lives in Buta Nagar, Migrant Quarters, Jammu. He studies Microbiology. Sushant writes short stories. He fears absurd. The author can be contacted at email@example.com |