Life changing fear of 10 minutes – A page of 2016 Curfew Diary
It was Tuesday of 13th September 2016 when I along with my maternal uncle went to buy few luggages for my marriage which was going to be held in the last week of the same month. Knowing that curfew would be likely imposed at 7:00 am, we hurried and reached Bohri Kadal, Srinagar at 6:30 am. It had no connotation with our early entrance into the market except not to witness wrath at the hands of armed forces deployed daily on the roads in the curfew, because few days before some ambulances and civilians were attacked by the troops on roads.
We had parked our car outside the shop (at main road) in which we entered to buy items. It was about 6:45 am, no shop was fully opened but every shop was less than half opened. I had bought one luggage and was bargaining for the second one. It was good environment around the market with no disturbances. We were talking to the shopkeeper and suddenly the atmosphere changed, and it only indicated that the curfew has been imposed today, but on odd time. All the shopkeepers pulled down the shutters of their shops so as to evade the fury of troops. The shopkeeper in whose shop we were did the same as others. These were CRPF Troops who started to shout lewd comments which rang up my ears, as if somebody was striking my ears with an iron rod. Whole atmosphere of the road changed in few seconds by their entrance. They had seen us inside the shop and now, they wanted to unleash their total wrath on us, but fortunately we had already pulled down the shutter. They were abusing every shopkeeper and all those who ran away to take refuge. It was so alarming and timorous atmosphere for all of us. I was continuously thinking that, what would happen to us if they entered the shop! All the time I was feeling so frightful for all of us. I was about to fell unconscious but somehow I retained my will to remain live. The troops ran amok in the area as they smashed the back window of our car which was outside the shop.
They were in a frenzied state as if they wanted to devour us. All the time the troops were horribly shouting with the motive of striking us by any means. We all remained quiet with fully bereft of strength and confidence. My throat and tongue had become very parch. I was uttering some Qur’anic verses in a feeble voice so as to receive help from Almighty. It was for the first time in 2016 Uprising to experience this event full of turmoil.
With the time, the shouts disappeared slowly and slowly. For few minutes we remained in the same state and after that we heard some Kashmiri voices around. Every shopkeeper brought up their shop shutters and we saw the troops are there and the movement of people had begun again. We felt some respite from the horrible & fearful life changing event. And then after we left back for home in our car of which back window was smashed by the troops. Those 10 minutes were very dangerous as if it had come with a daydream nightmare.
It serves as a trigger to put me in the state of despondency, whenever I recall this turbulent event. My soul completely vibes whilst recalling those images full of venom against us.
So many stories are penned down; this is just a page and a memory of 2016 Curfew Diary, “the diary full of shrieks, dirges and fearful memories”.
This is Kashmir’s story…..
* Khan Ansur is an Independent Researcher & Aspiring Social Worker
Srinagar, Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK)
Disclaimer: Views expressed are exclusively personal and do not necessarily reflect position of Oracle Opinions.