Kashmir…..the paradise…..my birthplace had a very rich history and culture. It was the most peaceful and non-violent region of India. I remember when I was a boy; I used to play with my Muslim friends and classmates. I remember particular one friend His name was Nasir.He used to throw his weight around and threaten other boys of the class.Though he was not the strongest of the boys. He used to brag about his connections and relations with notorious rogues. He used to say that he knows “phila”.I once asked him “who is phila”? he said” He is the most powerful rogue and gangster of Kashmir at that time(late 80’s).He also told me that phila had once attacked his rival with a knife and scratched hid shoulder. Though it was a scratch and not a stab, but still that was enough for the common Kashmiri to create fear in their hearts. Rapes and murders were unheard in Kashmir.Although there used to be minor scuffles sometimes and exchange of fists and blows and thrashing of kangries(traditional fire pot), but murders were very-2 far.
Up to 13th century .It was a seat for learning sharda and Sanskrit .Many rulers ruled Kashmir like Kambojas and Panchals.13 th century saw the dominance of Islam in Kashmir. Sufis and rishis were respected, worshipped and followed by all. There was a syncretic culture where Hindus and Muslims revered the same local saints and prayed at the same shrines. Sikandar Butshikan changed it all and he persecuted the Hindus and issued orders proscribing the residence of any other than Muslims in Kashmir.Silver and gold idols of gods were broken on orders of sikander.He forcibly converted hindus to muslims and number of hindus migrated to different parts of Present India.The torture of Kashmir hindus continued till the coming of Dogra rulers.
Come Jan 1990, V.P.singh as prime minister and Mufti Mohammed sayyed as Home minister of India. Same Kashmir turned into a virtual hell especially for Kashmiri Hindu pundits. Mosques which are place for worship was used as a platform to terrorize Hindus. Announcements from loudspeakers from the local mosques said that either you support us or you die. In fact Hindus were selectively massacred by the local terrorists. In just 3 months Local terrorists with the active support of Pakistan’s I.S.I killed hundreds of innocent Hindus and usually they targeted the main bread earner. This selective killing of Hindus by the Muslims virtually wiped out the entire population of Kashmiri Hindus from Kashmir. It was an ethnic cleaning of Hindus from Kashmir with the active support of Pakistan.
Even sufi-rishi tradition could not withstand the violent ways of terrorist killing.
Some terrorists in Kashmir dramatically declared after years that now they had a divine transformation of hearts and now they have shunned violent ways. Prominent among these pseudo-prophets are Farooq Ahmed dar alias Bitta karate who had self confessed on local television of killing more than 22 innocent Hindus and Yasin Malik-chairman of JKLF.
. The strongest of the species survive. This is a universal truth. And this applies to both animals and humans. History is like statistics or should I say statistics is like history.
Statistics is all about numbers. It is about forecasting of numbers. History is also like forecasting, but it is not the numbers here but events……past events…..number of past events….. Which are responsible for our present and the present events are pillars for the future events to happen. History says that Kashmir pundits are intellectuals, although we are less in number but our community has produced some of the genius and world class leaders like Pundit jawahar lal Nehru and Indira Gandhi
It is practically impossible to return back to our natives place in present scenario. There are number of Kashmiri Hindu organizations and groups who are struggling and fighting for the rights of Kashmiri Hindus. The demand for a protected area or a separate Kashmir within Kashmir under Indian jurisdiction is a very practical solution for sufferings of Kashmir Hindus as that will protect both their culture and religion and will also protect their birth land for future generations to come.