The Kashmir

February 18, 2012

The Snow Is Calling Once Again | #Kashmir


The Snow Is Calling Once Again 

By Ramesh Manvati

This time, I made my arrival quite early,

With the hope to embrace you tightly,

But, nowhere could you be seen.

Day in and day out, to meet you, I am so keen.

I am calling you once again.

Oh, Pandit ! Don’t you realise my pain?

The winter has set in yet again.

Have I to continue to seethe in pain?

I had called you in the past,

Your eerie silence has made me aghast.

Your roots, over five thousand years old, continue to seethe in pain.

I fail to understand what is the gain?

Over twenty painful years, we are already ages apart.

Your journey back home – not yet ready to start?

Seems, I have to bear, still, your being so upset.

To welcome you back, do I need to re-assure you,

That I will lay my best and thick velvety carpet?

Everything you have forgotten, so I feel.

Compelling me to remind you, with a fresh appeal.

On the onset of every winter, you would wait

for my arrival, with much zest and zeal.

And on my arrival from the heavens above,

within the warmth of your ancestral homes,

peeping through the doors and

through the windows-partly open,

or many a times from the ‘dub’ of your ‘bub’,

the leisure time you would enjoy,

gazing my elegant movements in sheer joy.

sonna sheen vollun dhaaray-dhaaray,

maharaaza raaza kumaaray aaw……”

some would merrily sing. And, at times, many

sipping ‘sheeri-chaai’ or even some hot ‘kehwa’

in the traditional ‘khos’ or a ‘kenzi-khos’,

held on the sleeve of your ‘pheran’,

prepared in a ‘samawaar’ and served by a ‘nosh’,

with a ‘garma-garm’ ‘taeil-woar’, ‘tomlla-tsaot’ or ‘ makkaai tsaot’,

or with it, even some enjoying ‘soa’tt’,

With a cosy ‘kaangar’ beneath your ‘pheran’;

The eldest among you, even smoking a ‘jajjeer’.

Forgotten? Occasional ‘shalfaa-malfaa’ , you had

with your toddlers to warm their hands and feet. And,

simultaneously narrating to them local folk-tales and lullabies.

Even ‘nav-sheen’ you celebrated,

in the company of your kith and kin,

music and dance; well dressed and decorated,

with the choicest of your dishes. And,

a ‘welcome drink’ would not be a sin,

even in the ancient times; just recheck

from the treasure of your ‘Neelmat Puraan’.

 

Remember? On my very first arrival,

the new brides you would routinely tease,

Forcing them to bring a ‘paschin’ – raw or cooked,

from their ‘maaluen’ with much ease.

Children would playfully sing everywhere,

sheena petto-petto, maama itto-itto…………”.

Even the stray dogs would dance merrily here and there,

on the roads, in streets or outside your ghetto.

You can be so forgetful, baffles me.

When I have not forgotten, how can you?

Walking, through your orchards and rice fields -spread across Kashyap’s valley.

Or through the towns and villages or ‘Sri-nagaree’ of goddess Sharada’s seat;

Through the serpentine and uneven lanes and narrow by-lanes,

with a ‘khraav’ or ‘pullhor’ or a long boot or a ‘duck-back’ shoe protecting your feet;

Your daily routine, even though being hurt, once in a while,

because of pervading ‘tulkattur’- exposing my frozen attitude,

would continue with serenity and great fortitude.

Even your cursing me at times – that, at times, I would mind,

while finding it difficult to move around.

Still, my cool but peaceful white cover on the ground,

over the surrounding houses, trees and the distant mountains,

lovely murmuring streams, though in deep sleep;

would make you overlook my hurt and dirt.

At the same time, no more feeling of being slighted, I am telling you.

Stray dogs, cows, crows and other perching birds,

without a fail and religiously you would feed, I still remember.

In the plains or atop a nearby hillock, temple bells you would ring,

Morning and evening, ‘kashiri leelaai’ you would sing.

As a habit, whether young or old; men or women,

busying yourself in the company of holy men,

always keeping your household, body and mind-neat and clean.

oftenly, you would praise my beauty and the surrounding scene.

My periodic arrivals and my stays

long or short, you enjoyed and cherished too.

I too enjoyed, let me now reveal to you,

your rolling me into a ‘sheena-mohneow’ occasionally-

in your ‘waaeri’, in the streets, or in nearby open fields. And,

even the ‘sheena-jung’ with your ‘mohalla’ friends.,

I remember vividly, why cannot you?

The vacations, children spent in their ‘maataamaal’, during the stay

of my old friends like ‘chillai-kallaan’, ‘chillai-khorrud’ and ‘chillai-buchcha’.

Remember? The sheer panic of being caught red handed,upon the sudden

bursting of a stolen egg – hidden inside the embers of your cosy ‘kaangar’ ;

Or, making and eating of a ‘mallai-kulfi’ on the ‘braer-k’anee’ of your residence,

secretly from the prying eyes of your elders including ‘bub’, ‘dyed’ or ‘baed- maej’,

 

Also, the ‘faaka’ many of you kept for the entire sacred month of ‘maag’;

Or the visit of your family priest, on the eve of ‘gora-trai’ of this month to your homes

with handmade pictures of ‘Saraswati’-blessing new brides and youngsters; and

exhorting them to continue the ancient tradition of learning.

I have just not forgotten; how can you?

hayrath-pooza’ was incomplete till, some of you, made my use.

That I had to be there even in the summer month of ‘haar’,

to defeat the evil designs of a tyrant Afghan ruler-Jabbar Khan,

and to uphold the sanctity of your sublime faith.

The popular tease – “wuchutoan yi jabbar jandha, haaras ti korrun vandha…..”

is an ample proof of my historical claim.

Even performing of your annual ‘jattae’n-ttae’n……..’,

on ‘teela-aettham’- concluding day of the sacred festival of hayrath’;

Or distribution of ‘dooen’ to ‘haenz’ children, curiously watching on the ‘yaarbal’ and,

offering of burning ‘chaeng’ to holy ‘Vitasta’ in the evening of the day,

Have you so conveniently forgotten?

I have not, how can you?

The aroma surrounding many of your winter festivals, rituals like

‘kheschri-maavas’, ‘gaada-batta’, ‘kaaw-punnim’, or

shishur’ of a new born child or a ‘nav-nosh’; And,

the twenty three day long ‘hayrath’ celebrations, still haunts me.

Such ancient festivities you will be observing in exile, so I earnestly hope.

Though, in an alien land, difficult it surely must be for you to cope.

The special dishes, as per your ‘reeth’, that you

prepared on such joyous occasions, still water my mouth.

Oh, Pandit ! Treat me back to that aroma and couth.

Decades have passed; have not heard a Lall-Vaakh,

“ hayrath maej aayay, marscha papar kyaaway………”

or “thukk-thukk, kuss chuv….”, nor seen anyone playing with cowries,

Please no more deprivations, I pray thee.

You cannot be so cruel to me.

Holding back the tears and trying to be brave.

My children – ‘shishar -ghaaent’, many now grown and

many on their way, hover in desperation. And,

for the warm kiss of your teeth continue to crave.

The winter has set-in, once again,

This time, I made my arrival quite early,

with the hope to embrace you tightly.

But, nowhere could you be seen.

Oh, Pandit ! I am reminding you once again,

Don’t you realize my seething pain?

Over two decades already, we continue to be apart,

Journey back home to your very own-‘Pannaen Maej-Kasheer’,

Still not yet ready to start???

      __________________________________________________________________________________

The writer , a Sr. Activist of Panun Kashmir, can be reached through e-mail : paannyaar@rediffmail.com /rameshmanvati@yahoo.co.in

        __________________________________________________________________________________

This poem is dedicated to the Youth of ‘Internally Displaced’ Kashmiri Pandit community ( now scattered across the globe) on the eve of “Ist International Kashmiri Pandit Youth Conference” organized under the aegis of Panun Kashmir, in Pune ( India), on 7- 8 January 2012


June 25, 2010

Stories from Rajatarangini – Tales from Kashmir

Filed under: Kashmir — Tags: , , — TheKashmir @ 9:51 am


UTPAL PUBLICATIONS

Publishers and Distributors

Specialize in Books on Kashmir

Stories from Rajatarangini – Tales from Kashmir


About the Book -

For the first time the ancient historical text Rajatarangini which means ‘River of Kings’ has been simplified for the younger generation. The stories which were written by Kalhana, a famous eleventh-century historian-poet bring to light the economic, political and social conditions of his time, and give interesting glimpses of life, including intrigues, in the royal court.


Characters of the epics, such as Sri Krishna, Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva and many others find a place in the events and are drawn in various colors through all the stories giving a pictorial glimpse. Handed down from generation to generation, these stories cover Kashmir’s rich culture, traditions and beliefs.

The selections from the classic work make a scintillating reading. The book is must-keep for the library of a child who awaits an entry into the world of fantasy inspired from reality. The parents must also read it out to their toddlers as the book brings Jammu & Kashmir cultural heritage into a literary concept like never before.

Author: Devika Rangachari

Price: Rs. 100 (Shipping extra)

For details Contact: +91- 9873297834, +91- 9818447636
Or, drop in a mail at utpalpublications@gmail.com


CONTACT US, For all other general, fiction, non-fiction and academic books.


Utpal Publications
New Delhi

June 24, 2010

The Kashmiri Pandits: Dispossessed and Discouraged


“Gairon ke sitam pe kya sikwa karein

Hume toh apno ne hi patthar maare hain”

These two lines in Hindi by Dines Naidu fits that bleak pitch in which the Kashmiri Pandits are today so repulsively forced to express themselves and their unrelenting plight after years and years of life living as a refugee at the doorstep of their own home.

And while India commemorate its ‘kaagzee taraqqee-ae-nation’ (Paper Progress of a Nation) and whatever it wants to, the Kashmiri Pandits, being dispossessed and discouraged in the hands of their own country, have got nothing else to do beside indulging themselves in the song of lamenting. And Ehsan Amir’s these two lines seems to be giving voice to their unheard sighs-

“Humse mat poochhiye hum kidhar jaayenge

Thak gaye hain bahut, apne ghar jaayenge”

Reading the huge online archives of sites dedicated to Kashmiri Pandits and going through the word-by-word description of the atrocities that was ‘showered’ upon them, my brain along with the raising impact of migraine tells me to stop reading any further but my heart, who himself is living the life of a forced rambler after being thrown out from his own house, pleads me to read on, so to grasp even a little bit of that inhumane treatments that Kashmiri Pandits had gone through, I read on.

It was the unfaithful year of 1989-90 which made nearly 400,000 Kashmiri Pandits ‘migrants’ (as Indian Government ‘fondly’ addresses them) inside their own nation, when Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front backed by the country on the other side of the border, indulged their selves in the ruthless genocide of tens of thousands of Kashmiri Hindus, they, the Hindus, then ran away, forced to leave their land, their home, their past, their present and into an uncertain future where today, they find themselves just like I find myself – unaccepted, unwelcomed and uncared – among the very people who happen to be our own.

It was the month of scorching summer in the year 2004, when just after performing the last rituals of my murdered father; I was driven out from my very own house. Tears of loss of my father had not even dried from my eyes when my very own blood-relatives stabbed into my chest.

A long quota of years has passed since then but the pain and the wound is still fresh – fresh enough to fill my eyes with tears and heart with pain of betrayal. And there is not a single day goes by when I, looking at myself in the mirror, don’t see the longing in those red eyes which have been barred to soak themselves from the beauty of their birthplace. It’s a longing for that home, which now belongs to the killers of my parents and which I know just like the ‘Pandits’, that what was snatched away from them will never be given back to them – Their home, their land.

This gruesome tale of Sarwanand Koul “Premi” – a Kashmiri Pandit, who was born in Kashmir’s Sofshalli, Anantnag village, depicts the misery that the thousands like him had to go through.

Premi was a poet and a teacher and when terrorism was at its extreme in the valley (though it is no less today, too) he refused to leave his village. He thought that he would withstand the Islamic hurricane as he had taught every Muslim man, women and dog in and around the periphery of his village and so they cannot as ungrateful as to kick him to dust along with his teachings and then bite him to death.

But his faith or whatever that he had in his heart for them, taught him the lesson which took away his life.

The ‘Patrons-of-Dearth’ entered in his house on the night of 28th April, 1990 and ordered all the members of his family to assemble into one room along with all the valuables. Whatever existed of any monetary value in the house of ‘Premi’ was offered to those ‘guardians of Jihad’ who, as they put it, were fighting for their freedom – freedom for an ‘Azaad Kashmir.’

After taking away whatever material Premi had in his house, the ‘terror-mongers’ then demanded that ‘Premi’ step out of the house for few words to be exchanged in private away from his family. And when the members of Premi’s family howled and whined the ‘Gods-of-Mercy’ gave them their words that, ‘Premi’ would return and return ‘safe and in one piece.’

But Premi’s only son requested to be allowed to accompany his old father. So the ‘kind’ and ‘good-hearted’ as those ‘unmasked-men’ were, agreed to the plight of a son, saying-

‘If you wish you may also accompany him…’

And once they stepped out of the house, they never returned. The cold-blooded torture that was carried out at the old teacher’s body and his young son’s can put to shame even the worst tyrant of the three worlds put together.

The spot in the forehead where ‘Premi’ would put his Tilak mark was brutally nailed. His body had the burnt dots of cigarette butts. The limbs of his body were broken and bones from his shattered ribcage poked out. His eye-balls lay crushed on the dust and he was hanged from a tree upside-down and bullets were fired on him. And the same orgy was bestowed upon his son.

The women inside the house ‘wailed and waited’ but feared to go out – feared that they too, might get raped just like the other day the wife of their neighbour was raped by these same ‘kind-hearted’ men.

Shame on us that we call ourselves human!

20th June marks the day of world refugees and their plight. And on this day the entire world comes together to give their bit to the refugees from all around the world, but at the same time the Kashmiri Pandits who are in there 20th year of being the refugees in their own nation – where you and I live – are still waiting to be remembered and addressed in that proper way which any countryman deserves to be addressed – as Citizens.

The many thousand Kashmiri Pandits since then have been living in the Indian Government’s “semi-permanent camps for the displaced” in Jammu and New Delhi.

But if you go visit these camps, then you will see that, not only they are disgustingly stuffed but also lack sufficient facilities and basic necessities.

Like there is no regular supply of drinking water, always there’s a shortage of medicines, plus the sanitation facility are in the worst conditions imaginable. And on top of all this, the education and employment opportunities are severely lacking.

And so not surprisingly, as the result of all this below level of living conditions, the Kashmiri Pandits, after 20 years of their disarticulation, have faced serious health issues like high incidence of several kinds of diseases, depressions, stress-related problems and high death rate.

People might wonder why isn’t the government doing something concrete for them than? But the silence which marks the being of Kashmiri Pandits as refugees is actually an awkward truth that our politicians, our media and our secular parties are unable to come to terms with, so they push this matter under that dark carpet which happens to be the outcome of culpable silence and deliberate ignorance.

I can only hope – hope that someday these silent Kashmiri Pandits will be heard by those who can make a concrete difference in their life and with this – I pray (though I hardly pray) that all those who have died in this massacre may Rest In Peace (Although I feel that it ain’t going to happen).

Author :SadhoGopal Ram    ; Source : Chowk.Com

(more…)

May 30, 2010

A pregnant “Kashmiri Pandit” woman in exile

Filed under: Pakistan, Terrorism In Kashmir — Tags: , , , , , — TheKashmir @ 5:01 pm

poem by Maharaj Krishen Santoshi…Translated by Arvind Giggoo

You grew
in me
like the moon
in the snowy winter nights.

In my moistened self
this was the first knock
of the blooming flower.

My child
I pleaded
to the snow for your beauty
to the Chinar for your height
to the lake for your depth
to the apples for your juicy sweet sweetness.

Ignorance was mine
when
the place where I beautified you
was
grabbed from me.

But
you are
inside me
throbbing
even in the loss of the land.

Praised be the Lord!
You will come
one day
my child,
smelling the fragrance
of the lost land in me.

I will not
rest you in the cradle
I will
keep you
on the hard rock of history
I won’t sing
lullabies to you.
I will cut the wings of
your sleep
and
keep you awake.

I want you to walk fearlessly on this earth.
My child,
I will pour
the droplets of the lake Satisar
into your innocent eyes
so that,
you don’t forget your climate.

April 8, 2010

99.14% Kashmiri Pandits forced to migrate out of Kashmir

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — TheKashmir @ 12:27 pm


KASHMIRI PANDIT SANGARASH SAMITI

Sathu Barbar Shah, Srinagar, Kashmir (J&K) – 190001

email: kpss.kashmir@gmail.com

 

 

Ref. No: …………………       Date: 07.04.2010

 

PRESS RELEASE

 

(State Government is now fiddling with the Kashmiri Pandits Data,

false reports submitted in the State Assembly)

 

The recent statements given by the representative of the ruling government on the floor of house has put us in a great shock. We never expected that the State Government will even fiddle with the data related to the Kashmiri Pandit Community. As we can understand that if they do so in respect of the Majority Community to satisfy their bosses in New Delhi, but to whom the State Government want to satisfy that they concealed the gave the distorted the facts and figures related to the Kashmiri Pandit Community.

 

In the year 2008 KPSS initiated a Independent Census Program of the Kashmiri Pandits living in the Valley and visited every nook and corner of the State to collect the data related to the Kashmiri Pandits viz-a-viz population (pre 1990 upto 31.03.2008), Killings, temples, health, jobs, financial status and other important factors.

 

Population (Pre 1989 upto 31.03.2008) / Migration

 

Sr. No. Time Period Kashmiri Pandit Population
In Kashmir Valley (families) Migration (families) %age
1 Till 01.01.1990 75,343 - -
2 01.01.1990 – 31.08.1990 40,741 34,602 45.93
3 01.09.1990 – 31.03.1992 6,460 34,281 84.14
4 01.04.1992 – 31.03.1998 3,773 2,687 41.59
5 01.04.1998 – 31.03.2008 651 3,122 82.74
Total 74,692 99.14

These figures reveal that out of 75,343 (3,67,289 souls) families; 74,692 (3,64.130 souls i.e. 99.14%) families of Kashmiri Pandits living in Valley opted for migration from time to time. These figures also reveal that the KP population in the Valley is still draining out and obviously, it is not the security reason. This clearly indicates that the State and Central Government have failed in restoring their faith in the Community and nothing positive has been done to stop this effectively.

What about those who didn’t got themselves as registered with the State / Central Government and were also forced to leave the valley from time to time. That means that the State Government is not going to own them back if the normalcy prevails in this part of the World.

Presently the Census done by the KPSS reveals that there are 651 families at 104 places living in the Valley having than 2756 souls by the end of March, 2008.

On the contrary Government claims that 808 Kashmiri Pandit families are still in Valley.

Kashmiri Pandit Killing

 

As per the report of the Government 219* Kashmiri Pandits have been killed during the past 20 years by the militants.

 

But as per the information so accured by the KPSS, hundreds of Kashmiri Pandits were killed during the past 20 years and the first list of 403** persons has been identified those who have been killed by the militants.

 

Even the cases related to the massacres have been closed by the State Government on the want of evidence. For which KPSS has already filed a compliant before State Human Rights Commission.

 

Temples

 

As per the State Government report only 170 out of 430 temples have been damaged in the militancy related incidents in Kashmir Valley past 20 years. It also said that out of 170 temples 90 have been renovated with costs Rs.33.00 lacs to the State Government.

 

But, as on 31.03.2008, during the census programme KPSS came across 665 temples which have been damaged due to the militancy related incidents during past 20 years. And we ask State Government to just publish the list of temples that they claim to have been renovated during the past 20 years alongwith the cost incurred on each temple.

All the figures so given by the State Government representative on the floor of House is very un-realistic and smells some conspiracy against the Kashmiri Pandit Community.

KPSS is going to organize a series of seminars on these issues in the coming days against the false propaganda of State / Central Government so that the world community can understand the malafide intentions of State / Central Government against this miniscule Community.

Sanjay K. Tickoo

President

+91-9906564741

* The so called official figures of number of pandits killed is dsiputed and have not accepted by Pandit community. The community feels the figures are not correct .

March 27, 2010

1105 disappeared in JK: Govt


Chief Miniter of Jammu & Kashmir made the following written reply to a question posed by senior PDP leader Abdul Haq Khan in the Legislative Assembly

“Only 1105 persons are reported to have disappeared in the State since 1989,”- Omar Abdullah

Omar Abdullah also happens to hold the Home Ministry of the state.

This dispels the myth built by Kashmiri separatists & ISI that there were gross human rights violation in Kashmir and tens of thousands of youths claimed to be missing .

What hold significance is that out of these 1105 , filed as disappeared , many are expected to have crossed over to Pakistan Occupied Kashmir and never returned .

While speaking to The Kashmir , Aijaz Dar of Kupwara estimates that around 1000 + youth who are still in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. That leaves the missing people to around 100 in last 22 Years of militancy.

Meanwhile J&K Govt is giving final touch to bring the youth back POK and enable the settlement in Indian Kashmir.

Kashmiri Pandit organisations are opposing this rehabilitation and surrender policy.

March 20, 2010

No Secularism , Only Islam in Kashmir : Hurriyat Leader Announces


The so called “liberals” and “Marxists” continue to live in denial , while as time and again it has been very evident that “Kashmiriat” as is is projected is an eye wash.

Two decades after 7 million Kashmiri Pandits were forced to leave by islamic fanatics , the issue remains the same. No tolerance of any other religion in Kashmir other than Islam.

On 17th March , for the sake of eye wash and deception, Syed Ali Shah Geelani , leader of Hurriyat appeals to Kashmiri Pandits to return back to the valley . Though unannounced this time is the obvious rider 1. Dont expect to get justice 2. Follow our fight against Indian Govt . 3 Live like minority at ‘our’ mercy.

The statement also quotes Geelani saying :

“No solution under the Indian constitution will be acceptable to Kashmiris.”

Immediately , almost the next day , Syed Ali Shah Geelani issues a statement in a public meeting which exposes the dual standard of Kashmiri leadership and how the agenda is pan -Islamic.

Addressing a public meeting in Anantnag , Geelani says :

“Not secularism but only Islam brings peace and justice to people and nation. But some of our leaders on one hand claim to be champions of Azadi and Islam but on the other hand believe in secularism.”

It must be noted that AnantNag witnessed anti Hindu riots in 1986 , in which hundred of Hindu houses were looted and temples destroyed. AnantNag is also strong hold of PDP , Party of Mehbooba Mufti .

Having rejected secularism , Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani in another statement demands reduction of time period for AmarNath Yatra.  AmarNath , not only is one of the Shakti peeth , but a place of prime importance to billions of Hindus across the globe.

Addressing a Fridaycongregation , Hurriyat leader demanded that Amarnath yatra should be reduced to 15 days as against 2 months.

The statement has generated anger among the Hindus . Brigadier  Suchet Singh [ retd ] , issues a statement which says

Geelani is trying to vitiate the atmosphere ahead of the yatra. The dates for the two-month pilgrimage have been fixed and there is no reason for reducing the duration. Geelani should focus on Haj rather than interfering in the religious affairs of Hindus,”

“The government should stop Geelani from making provocative statements,” Brigadier Singh said.”

Also , in another expose , The Govt while as have not provided to educated Kashmiri Pandit youth , despite many public announcement and promises , the very same Govt has gone ahead and announced Govt Job to those muslim youth who have been arrested for stone pelting.

Meanwhile Chief Minister Omar Abdullah also confirmed that such a policy was in the offing when he told the state assembly late Wednesday that stone pelters were “our boys” and they would be rehabilitated.

January 23, 2010

CHEATERS


Here i share with you three interesting photographs of the so called leaders of Kashmir who have cheated with the people.

These leaders have ,for their monetary benefit  been directly or indirectly been responsible for thousands of deaths in Kashmir and have been responsible for making 7,00,000 Kashmiri Pandits homeless and refugees in their own country.

This picture shows the passport of Syed Ali Shah Geelani , hardcore fundamentalist and leader of Hurriyat Conference. Geelani is also seen as a ‘hawk’ in the peace process.

While as Geelani provokes everybody in Kashmir to shun India and anything related to India , he does not mind getting himself treated in best of Indian hospitals of Mumbai & Delhi.

And yes , he had sworn by the country’s constitution and still carries an Indian Passport , while as he continues to play his dirty politics which results in more violence in Kashmir.He claims that he would convert Kashmir into an islamic state, while as he enjoys the benefit of his ‘Kafir’ Government.

Indian Passport of Syed Ali Shah Geelani

The below two pictures are of the person who introduced and smuggled guns in Kashmir. The person who has cases related to terrorist activities pending , but due to being an ‘agent’ of both the governments of India & Pakistan , he is allowed to be a free man.

This man is in love with money .According to SATP In 2002 police recoved INR 4.8 millions meant for Yasin Malik . As ordinary Kashmiris continue to struggle and arrange for their livelihood , as Tourism being the main industry of Kashmir continues to fail since the start of militancy, Yasin enjoys being showered by currency , no matter which country it may belong to.

As a Kashmiri Pandit refugee said,“If the Kashmiri Muslims want to put cheaters in the Hall of Fame, that’s their stupid and suicidal prerogative,”

January 18, 2010

India-Pakistan Road Map to Peace: Insult to Indian Patriots


By Kamal Hak

Panun Kashmir

The 150-odd gathering in the India International Centre Auditorium was oblivious of the irony of the situation. While Yaseen Malik, self-proclaimed father of religious terrorism in Kashmir, was threatening the nation with a return to arms, a couple of highly agitated Kashmiri Pandits outside were inhumanly dragged into police custody. Their fault? They were trying to be mirrors to reflect the failure of Indian civil society towards their internal displacement in the land.

In my heart of hearts, I was glad Rajinder Sachar provided us an opportunity to give vent to our pent-up frustrations. Listening to Sachar’s apologetic introduction on ‘Indian treachery in annexing Kashmir’ (yes, it’s true, he said that), I found reasons for continuing my struggle for a separate homeland in Kashmir.

Yaseen Malik was not destined to have it easy that day. This group of young displaced Kashmiri Hindu boys and girls were determined to make the event memorable for him. He looked ruffled. As somebody pointed out, no man would like to be damned as a ‘ra—t’ in the presence of his wife. Later, his repeated attempts to explain his position clearly betrayed his discomfort and invited more protests.

I resisted a strong temptation to be adventurous. Perhaps the spectacle of young boys and girls, many of whom might not have set foot in the lost homeland even once, taking over the baton of our struggle had a calming effect on my nerves. I sat down patiently to listen to the trash being blared out from the dais. An elderly lady sitting to my right with a snobbish expression on her wrinkled but botoxed face declared the protestors ‘oxymorons’. I was amused and felt sorry for her; later I discovered she was part of the organizing team.

Yaseen was boring. His articulation is more self-aggrandizement, distortion of facts and constructed ideology. He laid claim to five thousand years of Kashmir history and dumped Kashmiri Pandits as only a small class of society. A small section of the audience with preconceived notions nodded in approval. He proceeded to insult displaced Kashmiri Pandits by accusing the protestors of being ‘paid whipping boys of Indian intelligence agencies’. This evoked another strong reaction from the protestors. This prompted me to look towards the young boys and girls shouting at the top of their voices. Sudden realization dawned…

The parents of most of the youngsters expressing anger at the VIP treatment being accorded to the person responsible for rendering them refugees in their own country are personally known to me. Yaseen Malik dubbed them members of an affluent section of Kashmiri Pandits. This might be an exaggeration. That these youngsters belong to families that have done well during the last twenty years can’t be denied. But was it so always?

Many of these young persons were either not born or were mere toddlers when the Malik-led JKLF unleashed a campaign of terror against their families. The process of selective killings of Pandits reached its climax with a mass frenzy created through an eruption via thousands of mosques dotting the Kashmir landscape during the night of 19 January 1990. And while the boorish section of the audience were enjoying their cushy lives in India and abroad, the parents of these young persons were abandoning their homes and ancestral homeland in the stealth of dark winter nights. I still shudder at the memory of those initial years when most of us struggled to provide some semblance of human existence to our children and parents. I wish Yaseen Malik had seen us living six to eight persons in 8ft by 8ft rooms without basic amenities.

Today Kashmiri leaders and their cohorts in India lament the tragedy of the families who fell to the bullets of militants or security forces. I wish they were there with us when most of our parents and grandparents died a thousand deaths before succumbing to heat-strokes, mosquito bites, stress-related diseases, unnatural accidents and unfulfilled longing for their lost homes.

At times I pity Yaseen Malik’s intellect and laugh at his idiotic articulation. For him, Kashmiri Pandits living in Delhi need not be taken seriously as they drive their own cars and live in air-conditioned homes. The oxymoron in him forgets Kashmiri Pandits, unlike his own community, have traditionally valued only two things – their own roof over their heads and their children’s education. Malik, though aware of this fact, doesn’t allow his politics to admit it. I have a strong conviction that Malik and his ilk can’t reconcile with the survival and prosperity of displaced Pandits. It would have mightily pleased them to see Pandits begging on the roads of the Indian plains.

The self-declared intellectuals sitting in the auditorium and frowning at the protestors would have done well to understand the sociology of the Kashmiri Pandit community. They would have understood how even under extremely hostile circumstances, the Pandits not only survived, but most even prospered. I wish they knew “We are because We believe.”

We may not eat one meal, but we will not deprive our children the best education. Our success is due to this inherent quality. The Maliks and Sachars of this world have no right to deny us the claim on our homeland because we came to protest in our own cars. Unlike those whose millions have accrued from liberal contributions through Indian peace interlocutors, Pakistani masters, and other dubious sources, Kashmiri Pandits have shed their own blood and sweat for their little accumulations. While Yaseen shows his discomfort at the prosperity of Pandits, his sympathetic audience should have known that displaced Kashmiri Pandits collectively pay enough Income Tax to feed all the poor families in the Valley.

Yaseen Malik finished his speech with threats of returning to militancy and no achievable solutions to offer. He was clearly shaken by the protestors accusing him of the alleged rape and murder of a Kashmiri Pandit girl. Meanwhile, a young person in a black jacket came up to me and asked:

-        “Sir, don’t you think it is unfair to brand him as ra—t?”

-        “Why?” I counter question.

-        “Because you can’t prove it,” he replied, almost innocently.

I decided he deserved no further attention.

The next speaker went through his speech unhindered and it was time for summing up. Under fierce pressure of the protesting youths, Rajinder Sachar allowed a few interventions. Further shocks awaited us. To an observation from a Kashmiri Hindu, Sachar brazenly declared that the nation should be grateful to those who centuries ago forced the Kashmiri Pandits out of Kashmir. He extended a sadistic logic behind his assertion, “we would have otherwise been deprived of persons like Nehru.” There was more commotion and still more before the session ended.

We came out of the auditorium and decided we could not partake lunch with the people who paid no cognizance to our geo-political aspirations. We also did not want to give company to the biggest terrorist in the country. We began dispersing. Some of us had a task at hand. We needed to seek the release of friends detained earlier for objecting to the presence of a staunch enemy of the nation in the national capital. For me the day was not finished. A person calling himself Engineer Rashid, a sitting Kashmir MLA, walked up to me aggressively and started a discussion.

-        “Are you Pandits aware that during the last two decades more than 80,000 Muslims have lost their lives in Kashmir?” His tone was arrogant.

I may not agree with the figures, but I can’t deny the immense human tragedy that has befallen Kashmir. But I was in no mood to prolong the discussion. Though the country may have failed to utilize Kashmiri Pandits in understanding the psyche of Kashmiri Muslims, given an opportunity no one can score in a dispassionate argument with them.

-        “Why are you lamenting the death of 80,000 Muslims?” I asked Engineer Rashid.

-        “These people died for a cause as they wanted to be part of Pakistan. And why should thousands of Pandits have died? They had no cause to die for.”

Probably Rashid understood where this discussion could lead; he walked away sheepishly.

As I was walking towards my car, I was suddenly stopped in my tracks by the young man in the black jacket.

-        “Sir, you didn’t answer my question. How can you prove Yaseen Malik r—d and k—-d that girl?”

Impressed by his persistence, I decided to give him some hard-earned wisdom. On enquiry, he revealed his connections with some civil liberties group (but naturally).

-        “Have you ever heard of Bitta Karate?”

-        “No sir.”

-        “Haven’t the apologists told you about him?” He looked awkward at his ignorance.

-        “Please ask your promoters about him and if they don’t tell you then call me to know your answers.”

He stared at me bewildered as I walked away.

[Bitta Karate is a Kashmiri terrorist who confessed – to a journalist on video – to killing around 40 Kashmiri Pandits. He was arrested for his crimes and released without conviction for want of witnesses]

The writer is a displaced Kashmiri Pandit living in Delhi and a senior Panun Kashmir activist

Source : Vijayvaani

December 23, 2009

My name is not Khan, I am Mr Kaul


By Tarun Vijay

Tarun VijayI am not Khan. My name bears a different set of four letters: K A U L. Kaul. As those who know Indian names would understand I happened to be born in a family which was called Hindu by others. Hence, we were sure, we would never get a friend like KJ to make a movie on our humiliations, and the contemptuous and forced exile from our homeland. It’s not fashionable. It’s fashionable to get a Khan as a friend and portray his agony and pains and sufferings when he is asked by a US private to take off his shoes and show his socks. Natural and quite justifiable that Khan must feel insulted and enraged. Enough Masala to make a movie.

But unfortunately I am a Kaul. I am not a Khan.

Hence when my sisters and mothers were raped and killed, when six-year-old Seema was witness to the brutal slaughtering of her brother, mother and father with a butcher’s knife by a Khan, nobody ever came to make a movie on my agony, pain and anguish, and tears.

No KJ would make a movie on Kashmiri Hindus. Because we are not Khans. We are Kauls.

When we look at our own selves as Kauls, we also see a macabre dance of leaders who people Parliament. Some of them were really concerned about us. They got the bungalows and acres of greenery and had their portraits were worshipped by the gullible devotees of patriotism.

They made reservations in schools and colleges for us. In many many other states. But never did they try that we go back to our homes. They have other priorities and ‘love your jihadi neighborhood’ programmes. They get flabbier and flabbier with the passing of each year, sit on sacks of sermons; issue instructions to live simply and follow moral principles delivered by ancestors and kept in documents treated with time-tested preservatives.

They could play with me because my name is Kaul. And not Mr Khan. I saw the trailer to this fabulous movie, which must do good business at the box office.

There was not even a hint that terror is bad and it is worse if it is perpetuated in the name of a religion that means Peace. Peace be upon all its followers and all other the creatures too.

So you make a movie on the humiliation of taking off shoes to a foreign police force which has decided not to allow another 9/11.

The humiliation of taking off the shoes and the urge to show that you are innocent is really too deep. But what about the humiliation of leaving your home and hearth and the world and the relatives and wife and mother and father? And being forced to live in shabby tents, at the mercy of nincompoop leaders encashing your misery and bribe-seeking babus? And seeing your daughters growing up too sudden and finding no place to hide your shame?

No KJ would ever come forward to make a movie, a telling, spine-chilling narration on the celluloid, of five-year-old Seema, who saw her parents and brother being slaughtered by a butcher’s knife in Doda. Because her dad was not Mr Khan. He was one Mr Kaul.

Sorry, Mr Kaul and your entire ilk. I can’t help you.

It’s not fashionable to side with those who are Kauls. And Rainas. And Bhatts. Dismissively called KPs. KPs means Kashmiri Pandits. They are a bunch of communalists. They were the agents of one Mr Jagmohan who planned their exodus so that Khans can be blamed falsely. In fact, a movie can be made on how these KPs conspired their own exile to give a bad name to the loving and affectionate Khan brothers of the valley.

To voice the woes of Kauls is sinful. The right course to get counted in the lists of the Prime Minister’s banquets and the President’s parties is to announce from the roof top: hey, men and ladies, I am Mr Khan.

The biggest apartheid the state observes is to exclude those who cry for Kauls, wear the colours of Ayodhya, love the wisdom of the civilisational heritage, dare to assert as Hindus in a land which is known as Hindustan too and struggle to live with dignity as Kauls. They are out and exiled. You can see any list of honours and invites to summits and late-evening gala parties to toast a new brand. All that the Kauls are allowed is a space at Jantar Mantar: shout, weep and go back to your tents after a tiring demonstration. Mr Kaul, you have got a wrong name.

A dozen KJs would fly to take you atop the glory – posts and gardens of sympathies if you accept to wear a Khan name and love a Sunita, Pranita, Komal or a Kamini. Well, here you have a sweetheart in Mandira. That goes well with the story.

And you pegged the movie plot on autism.

I wept. It was too much. I wept as a father of a son who needed a story as an Indian. Who cares for his autistic son, his relationship with the western world, his love affair with a young sweet something as a human, as someone whose heart goes beyond being a Hindu, a Muslim or a proselytizing Vatican-centric aggressive soul. Not the one who would declare in newspaper interviews: “I think I am an ambassador for Islam”. Shah Rukh is Shah Rukh, not because he is an ambassador for Islam. If that was true, he could have found a room in Deoband. Fine enough. But he became a heartthrob and a famousl star because he is a great actor. He owes everything he has to Indians and not just to Muslims. We love him not because he is some Mr Khan. We love him because he has portrayed the dreams, aspirations, pains, anguish and ups and downs of our daily life. As an Indian. As one of us.

If he wants to use our goodwill and love for strengthening his image as an ambassador for Islam, will we have to think to put up an ambassador for Hindus? That, at least to me, would be unacceptable because I trust everyone: a Khan or a Kaul or a Singh or a Victor. Who represents India represents us all too, including Hindus. My best ambassadorship would be an ambassadorship for the tricolour and not for anything else because I see my Ram and Dharma in that. I don’t think even an Amitabh or a Hritik would ever think in terms Shah Rukh has chosen for himself. But shouldn’t these big, tall, successful Indians who wear Hindu names make a movie on why Kauls were ousted? Why Godhra occurred in the first place? Why nobody, yes, not a single Muslim, comes forward to take up the cause of the exiled and killed and contemptuously marginalized Kauls whereas every Muslim complainant would have essentially a Hindu advocate to take on Hindus as fiercely as he can?

If you are Mr Khan and found dead on the railway tracks, the entire nation would be shaken. And he was also a Rizwan. May be just a coincidence that our Mr Khan in the movie is also a Rizwan.

Rizwan’s death saw the police commissioner punished and cover stories written by missionary writers. But if you are a Sharma or a Kaul and happened to love an Ameena Yusuf in Srinagar, you would soon find your corpse inside the police thana and NONE, not even a small-time local paper would find it worthwhile to waste a column on you. No police constable would be asked to explain how a wrongly detained person was found dead in police custody?

Because the lover found dead inside a police thana was not Mr Khan. No KJ would ever come forward to make a movie on ‘My name is Kaul. And I am terror-struck by Khans’.

Give me back my identity as an Indian, Mr. Khan and I would have no problem even wearing your name and appreciating the tender love of an autistic son.

Source : Times Of India

Tarun Vijay’s Blog : http://tarun-vijay.blogspot.com/

December 2, 2009

Kashmir’s struggle for so-called azaadi has been subsumed by the worldwide jihad – – Tavleen Singh


Times have Changed, Issues are Different

There was a time when it seemed as if a solution in Kashmir could bring peace with Pakistan. That time has gone. The Taliban now have a grander plan for the subcontinent

T he average Indian is so bored with Kashmir these days that I always hesitate to raise the subject in a column. If I do this week it is because a meeting took place in Delhi that has to go down as one of the most extraordinary in recent times. It was organized by social activist Madhu Kishwar under the auspices of the Centre for the Studies of Developing Societies, on November 7, and I went along because she invited a glittering array of politicians from Kashmir. I have not been to Srinagar in more than five years and thought the meeting could be a good way to revive my interest in a subject I once wrote a book on.

Among those who came to the meeting in the library of the Nehru Memorial were Mehbooba Mufti, Muzzafar Baig who was Deputy Chief Minister in the last government, Mohammad Sufi Uri from the National Conference, Professor Abdul Ghani Butt from the Hurriyat and Yasin Malik from the Jammu & Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF). The meeting was chaired by Ram Jethmalani and attended by journalists, academics, Kashmir activists and sundry others. It was a full house.

Madhu, an eager beaver peacenik as ever was, began the day’s discussions by emphasizing loudly and often that we were gathered together to find solutions. Despite this, things got off to an interminably dull start because Mr Uri from the National Conference made a long, boring speech that was full of historical grievances that everyone present was more than familiar with. Muzaffar Baig took over from him and was more interesting because he offered a solution. He said that Kashmir’s borders needed to be made irrelevant as Dr Manmohan Singh has himself often promised. Instead of redrawing maps there should be a softening of the borders so that Kashmiris, Pakistanis and Indians could come and go freely and there should be ‘‘dual currency’’. In view of what is happening in Afghanistan and Pakistan, this suggestion seemed so naively oblivious of geo-political realities that I went up to him when he finished speaking and asked if he had heard of the Taliban. Was he aware that this group of Islamist jihadis was close to threatening the existence of Pakistan and Afghanistan? How long would it take the Taliban to conquer Kashmir if Indian troops were withdrawn? He laughed sheepishly.

In any case the meeting carried on peacefully and in a dull sort of way until the late afternoon when it came to Yasin Malik’s turn to speak. I had not seen him in many years and was impressed to see him look dapper and elegant in a black, velvet jacket and a black and white polka-dotted shirt instead of the drab, Kashmiri clothes he usually wears. He looked more like an urbane Srinagar businessman than the terrorist he once was, but he was not allowed to forget his past. No sooner did he rise to speak than the meeting deteriorated into chaos.  The hall was filled with insults hurled at him by a group of young Kashmir Pandits who till then had sat silent and unnoticed.

‘‘We will not allow this monster to speak,’’ they yelled, ‘‘ask him who raped and killed Sarla Bhatt? Ask him how many Hindus he has killed? He is a terrorist. He has no right to be here.’’  They said other things as well, angry, ugly things, and they made so much noise as they stood up and shouted their abuse that the meeting was totally disrupted for several minutes. Yasin Malik was infuriated and ready to leave. It was only after many entreaties from Madhu and Mr Jethmalani that he agreed to speak. But then Mr Jethmalani put his foot into it by saying that he himself loved Pakistan more than Pakistanis loved Pakistan and that all Indians should develop a similar love for Pakistan. Then he added there would have been no militancy in Kashmir at all if the 1987 elections had not been rigged to coincide unfortunately with a large number of mujahideen in Afghanistan suddenly becoming ‘‘unemployed’’ because the Soviet Union withdrew its troops.

Yasin Malik decided to pick this up as the starting point of his speech. He said, ‘‘I was shocked to hear Jethmalani Sahib say what he did. I was the one who started the armed struggle in Kashmir and I was neither Afghan nor unemployed. I picked up the gun because it seemed there was nothing else to do. We had tried peaceful means to achieve azaadi and failed.’’

He then gave details of how the JKLF was among the groups that had set up the Muslim United Front to contest the Assembly elections in 1987. ‘‘We contested the elections because we thought that if we won we would declare Kashmir independent through a resolution in the Assembly but they were not prepared to give us our basic democratic rights. So we had no recourse but to pick up the gun.’’ He added that he had given up violence because he was persuaded by the ‘‘Indian civil society’’ that solutions could come peacefully. He felt betrayed, he said, because he now knew that all the Indian civil society could do was talk.

The Kashmiri Pundits were not going to take that lying down even if the panelists were, and they started yelling that the armed struggle had never ended. What about the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen? Who were they? And who were the other militant groups that continued to kill innocent people in Kashmir?

In the end there was more rancour and rage than debate, and the solution to our Kashmir problem remained as elusive as ever. Sitting next to me at one point was General Lakhvinder Singh, a hero of the Kargil war, and I asked him if he thought that there was any chance of reducing the deployment of Indian troops in Kashmir. He said, ‘‘We’ve tried it. And wherever we have reduced deployment we have seen an immediate increase in militant activities. It is not as easy as these politicians make it sound.’’

It is not easy at all because it is clear to many of us who have followed the Kashmir story carefully for many, many years that the problem has changed. There was a time when it seemed as if a solution in Kashmir could bring peace with Pakistan. That time has gone. Kashmir’s struggle for so-called azaadi has been subsumed by the worldwide jihad. The Taliban have a grander plan for the Indian subcontinent. They want to conquer Islamabad, and when that is done they want the flag of Islam to fly over India.

Author : Ms Tavleen Singh

Source : SentinelAssam

September 25, 2009

Sharda Temple of Hindus in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir


It may be noted that Goverments of both countries, India and Pakistan have allowed muslim population of Kashmir to cross the line of actual control and have allowed trade as well across the border , both these countries are not allowing Kashmiri Hindus to visit the above shrine despite many requests.

Prior to independence, Hindu Pandits were settled in great numbers, in the Northern areas of Kashmir. Sharadi is a small village in Northern parts of Kashmir, which was famous for an ancient temple of Goddess Sharada. A Kashmiri Pandit family headed by Thusu Ladarwani was settled in this village. This Thusu family was compelled to migrate to Srinagar from Pakistan occupied Kashmir (POK) and again due to the terrorists and their activities, had forcibly to shift to Jammu and stay in a transit camp there.
At present, Shri Shambhunathji Thusu from this family is ninety four year old and possesses an exceptionally remarkable memory. He is well versed in Urdu, and Kashmiri language . Shri Shambhunathji provided me a map in Urdu prepared by him, giving details of the “Sharda Temple”. He has successfully retained many memories, about the “Sharda Temple” right from 1920 A.D. Shri. Shambhunathji reiterated that there was no idol of the Goddess Sharda in the temple, but there was only a stone plinth, admeasuring six feet long, seven feet wide and one and half feet high. “Just outside the temple, not very far, was a Shivaling.( i.e . symbolic idol of Lord Shiva). The devotees worshipped at both the places.

Shri. Shambhunathji was born and brought up in Shardi and he spent his prime youth there only. His family owned a business there. He aptly recollects the fair held at Shardi in the month of Bhadrapada (the sixth month according to Hindu Calendar) on the eighth day of Shukla Paksha i.e. a fortnight of rising moon.

He makes a mention of the briefings by a scholar in History from “Shardi”, about the assistance rendered, by a Gaud King to the “Sharda Temple Complex”. The village Shardi is situated at a distance of 130 Kilometers from Srinagar and 140 k.m.s. from Muzaffarabad. This place, presently, has the following postal address in Pak occupied Kashmir. (POK).
Village Shardi, Tehsil Atta Mukam, District Muzafferabad.

Since olden times, the village Shardi was renowned for the following two things
1. temple of Goddess Sharda, and
2.  Sharda Peetham (Centre for Advanced studies)

Prior to the partition, a fair was held at village Shardi in the month of Bhadrapada and on the eighth day of the Shukla Paksha, and devotees from all over India, flocked the place in thousands, for receiving the blessings of the Mother Sharada deity. There is a place called “Tikkar” at a distance of one and half kilometers from Kupwara, in Kashmir. From here, there is a short cut for going to Shardi which measures 40 k.m. Many Pilgrims treaded this path only.

Prior to the partition of India, many Kashmiri Pandit families were settled in “Shardi”. Those professing as priests and traders had their shops   and   establishments   in the   near vicinity of the Sharda Teerath. Besides,   many  saints,   ascetics and their associates/disciples and their servants also lived there.

Shri. Pradeep Kaul, from Srinagar, informed that every scribe offered his writings to Goddess Sharda, for obtaining her blessings. The following alleged legend in this regard runs as follows. The Kashmiri Scribes, kept their Bhurjapatra manuscript covered in a platter overnight, in front of Goddess Sharda, for obtaining her blessings. If the pages of writings remained undisturbed, it was taken for granted that the works had the blessings of the Goddess. If, however, the pages of the works were found sifted, the works were considered as disapproved by the Goddess.

Presently , the Sharda Temple lies within POK territory and one has to travel from Muzaffarbad to Thitwal – 80 K.M. from Thitwal to Karna-20 k.m., from Keran to Dudhe Niyal – 24 km, and from Dudhaniyal to Shardi- 16 K.M., to reach Shardi.

Prior to 1947, some travellers went to “Udi” from Barahmulla, and then from “Udi” to Shardi, via Muzaffarabad. In Shardi, the Sharda temple is on the right bank of river “Krishnaganga”. At this spot, there is a confluence between river Madhumati and river Krishnaganga. In Sanskrit, the word Sharda denotes both Goddess “Saraswati”, and Goddess “Durga”. An old styled, stringed musical Instrument called “Veena” is also addressed as “Sharda”. The Kashmiri Pandits, rever this Goddess Sharda as a symbol of strength. The brief history of “Sharda” in Kashmir is as follows.

“Kashyapmir” aka Kashmir means the Land of “Kashyap: Rishi the ascetic. Kashmir was a home of erudites and scholars. Here was an University of the extremely learned Pandits and philosphers in all branches of knowledge. The epic, Mahabharata, refers to Kashmir as “Kashmir Mandal”. Ancient History of India describes that there was a temple of “Goddess Sharda” in Kashmir also. There was a centre for providing education, Sharada Peetha had four doors facing four direction. The southern door was always closed and no one from South ever entered from this door. “Shankaracharya” in 8th cent A.D. opened this door and entered the Centre . He defeated all the scholars there and won the highest hierarchial position of Acharya. An ancient volume “Shakti Sangam Tantra” has a stray reference to “Sharda complex”. The volume describes Kashmir as a Land from Sharda Complex to “Saffron mountain ” Keshara Parbat extending upto 50 yojana.

At present, in POK, the valley of river Krishnaganga lies at a distance of 125 k.m. from Muzaffarabad towards North. It is now being addressed as “Neelam Valley” by Pakistani authorities.

The village “Shardi” lies in between Gurej and Karna: the two places in Neelam valley. At Shardi, wreckaged remains of the temple of Goddess Sharda can be seen. One can reach Shardi within 4 hours from Muzaffarbad. The following are the lines from the verse of “Goddess Sharda” (residing in Kashmir) in praise of her.

Prior to Division of Kashmir in last century Mr. Bamzai, a Kashmiri Pandit, has very aptly described the Sharda Temple had the main girdle of 22 feet dia. It had an entrance door in the west. The other entrances had arches over them, and these arches were 20 feet in height .The main entrance had foot steps. On both sides of the porch, there were two square shaped pillars, 16 feet high and 2’6″ x 2’6″ in sectional size. Carved out of a solid stone Block. The construction inside the temple was very plain and unadorned . The temple was situated on a hillock, on the right’ bank of river Madhumati”. The rectangular sanctum had 63 foot steps, each 9′ wide. The name and fame of this Sharda Teerath was well spread throughout ancient India.

Kalhan, the famous Historian, who wrote “Rajtarangini has given a reference to “Lalitaditya” of the eighth’s century. He says, disciples of the Gaud King had come all the way from Bengal to Kashmir to pay a visit to this Sharda Mandir.

Alberuni, the famous traveller of the 10th century has made a mention of this “Sharada Mandir”. He narrates “After traversing the interior portion of the valley of Kashmir, one reaches the Bolair Mountain, which is mid way between “Ladakh” and “Gilgit’. Many pilgrims come here for receiving the blessings of Goddess Sharda”. Albe-runi further states that this “Sharda Teerath is equally famous like Som Nath of Gujarat, the Vishnu Temple of Thaneshwar, and the Sun-Temple of Multan.

“Bilhan” Pandit the famous author of the Later half of the 11th Century has also made a mention of the :Sharada Teerath”. Though settled in South India over a long period, “Bilhan” has dedicated all his Literary works to Goddess “Sharda”.

Between the period 1088 A.D. and 1172 A.D., an erudite, Shri Hemchandra had completed his “Prabhav Karta” a voluminous treatise. Under the auspices and patronage of King “Jay Singh” of Gujarat, he was required to compile a volume on “Grammar”. So, king Jay Singh deputed his representative to Kashmir, and made available to Shri Hemchandra a manuscript of the subject of grammar, from the Library of Sharda Teerth. This enabled Shri. Hemchandra, to complete his treatise called “Hemkandra” (Siddha Hemkandra) . This amply proves, how the name and fame of the library of “Sharda Teerth” was well-known in ancient India and as to, how abounding was the Library of “Sharda Peeth”.

Historian Jon Raja has made a reference, as to, how Sultan of Kashmir Zain-ul-Abidin visited this place in 1422 A.D.
Abul Fazal has also made a reference to this place. The stone crafted Sharda Mandir, he adds, a beautiful temple at that-is situated on the bank of river Madhumti (Krishna Ganga). Gold was often found in the river basin here. A fair is held here, on the eighth day of every month of the (Shukla Paksha) fortnight of the rising moon. After the Mughals, the Dogra regime assumed power in Kashmir and the then Collector of Muzaffarabad, Col. Gundu repaired the temple and provided a new ceiling made of wood. He got fixed an annuity for the priest of the temple, under the orders of Maharaja Gulab Singh of Kashmir.

The Northeast province of our vast country India is Kashmir. Kashmir has its own style of temple Architecture. This style was developed, during the reign of King Lalitaditya (724 A.D.) and in 9th Century reached its Zenith, during the regime of Avantiverman. There are a few ancient temples in Kashmir. Among these, the Rudrash temple at Ludo, the sun-temple at “Martand” and the “Shankaracharya Temple at Srinagar are conspicuously famous. Generally, a temple in Kashmir has two parts, a square sanctum and a porch in front of it. These structures have centres and subcentres of Learning associated with them.
Experts opine that the pillars and columns of Kashmiri temples compare favourably with those of Derrik style. There is an expansive courtyard around the temple. This ancient Sharda Mandir is in (P.O.K.) today and has nurtured all the Salient features of Kashmiri style of Architecture.

Yograj Razdan and Mr. Ratan Kaul made available this rare photograph of Sharda Mandir from Sharadi. It is at their instance, it was available to me.

Kashmir, in olden days, was a centre for education , pursuit of knowledge and studies of various sciences. That is exactly why, Kashmir is also called Land of Goddess Sharda, City of Goddess Sharda and Sharda Peetham (University).
The famous Chinese traveller, Hue-en-tsang visited Kashmir in the year 632 A.D. and lived there for almost two years. His notings assert that at Shardi, there are Pandits who are exceptionally brilliant, endowed with perspicacious wits and acumen and are genius in the real sense of the term. There is a narrative, regarding Goddess Sharda in Hindu Scriptures. When Pandits refuse to perform the sacred thread ceremony of “Shandilya” the son of ascetic “Vashishta”, he (Shandilya) under instructions of his father, went to Kashmir, to offer his services to Goddess Sharda. He bathed in the water tank near Sharda temple and got his body, transformed into radiant gold, afterwards, he, by the grace of Goddess Sharda obtained accomplishment and became famous as Shandilya Rishi the ascetic.

The Sharda Shastranam Stotra is a canticle depicting Goddess Sharda as follows :-
Goddess Sharda is “Sheeladevi” (A Goddess in stone) she sits on a stone seat and has a pleasantly smiling face. Her form and appearance resemble those of Goddess Parvati (Wife of Lord Shiva). She holds a Sword in one hand. Her eyes are glowing and radiant like the Sun, the moon and the god fire, she is the Supreme controller of all the three “Lokas” (According to Hindu Mythology, there are three lokas i.e. worlds swarga (the heaven) Mrutya (the Earth) and Patal (the under world). She has six arms and sports the sacred thread of Yagyopavit Shandilys, the ascetic. Her devotees are blessed with the eternal light from the outer world.

The members of the Gujar and Pahadi Communities, residing in the nearby area of the “Shardi” village had an abiding and unalienable faith in the sheeladevi shakti peeth (a source of power). They offered cow’s milk and cereals and other agricultural produce to Goddess Sharda. In the recent times, Swami Nandlalji a famous Yogi (a hermit) from Kashmir had his hermitage near the Sharda temple, and his disciples were both’ Hindus This is how the imposing and magnificent history of Goddess Sharda for a few centuries in the post goes. The following lines from a Sanskrit canticle are enough and sufficient to stress the importance of the history of Goddess Sharda.
Article Courtsey Author : Mr Sanjay Godblode  ;

* Video of Sharada Temple was originally uploaded on YouTube by Mr Ayaaz Rasool Nazki . He is also available on FaceBook

September 24, 2009

Temples of Kashmir – Looted & Plundered


No matter how much the media tried to hide the facts , the truth is there for everyone to see.

The Temples of Kashmir having been looted and destroyed by Islamic fanatics even in the capiltal city Srinagar . One of the temple is just a stone throw away from the ‘secure’ area near world famous Dal Lake.

And the world continues to remain silent !!!

July 30, 2009

Hindu Temples in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir


Mirpur has a special place in sub-continent’s history. The famous battle between Alexandar and Porus was fought here in 323 BC.  A large number of Hindus lived in Mirpur once . Today Mirpur doesnt have any hindus living in there.

Please find below the state of Hindu temples in Mirpur …

Shiva Temple - Mirpur [Pakistan Occupied Kashmir ] RaghuNath (Ram ) Temple in Old Mirpur [ Pakistan Occupied Kashmir ]
Raghunath Temple in Evening – Mirpur Pakistan Occupied KashmirRaghunath [ Ram ] Temple in Evening [ Mirpur - Pakistan Occupied Kashmir ]

Pictures Courtsey : Mohsin

July 29, 2009

India Got Talent – Priya Raina


For a Change , besides usual Politics , I would be introducing the readers of this blog to the youth of Kashmiri Hindu Community , their talent and their contribution to the society.

These youth are the future of Panun Kashmir.

To start with , please find below video of Priya Raina , who now hails from Jammu at “India Got The talent Show” . This show featured on 19th July 2009.

Pls do vote for Priya Raina

Older Posts »

The Silver is the New Black Theme. Blog at WordPress.com.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 5,655 other followers

%d bloggers like this: