The Farewell Journey

Muzamil Rather 

“Dapan mujahid che fassith ” (the militants are trapped), somebody shouted, as soon as I stepped out of the main gate of my house to offer the maghrib salah, the news came as a bolt from blue. When I was informed that the three rebels are trapped in the Ovaera village of Pahalgam. When he named them and among them was the energetic, the courageous, noble soul and my classmate Abid. Nobody can deny his courage and determination, which he had many a times shown in the past. As I entered into the Masjid, the prayers for our young fighters came out with the sigh of desperation. As the Internet was not working properly all i could do was to make a few calls to get the confirmation of the news. It remained doubtful who was trapped there, although it was clear that the encounter was going on until i slept.

Next day as i woke up, i opened the window; God had painted this land white with the thick blanket of snow perhaps to hide the blood stains of our martyrs, whose blood had already soaked this land for the past six months. Since I was very desperate to know about the fate of our beloved brothers, I hurried down stairs into the kitchen to inquire about the affair. I saw everyone sitting there sipping noon chai with the signs of anxiety on their faces. It was still unconfirmed whether they were martyred or not, as the Indian Govt. had blocked Internet in our area. As soon as I started to take the first sip of my tea cup, my grand father from the other room came and said, “tre che gamit shaheed” (three have been martyred) as was announced on AIR news. The news sent shivers down my spine, and everyone sitting around me looked into each others faces and a pal of gloom descended over the whole family. Everyone was shocked, deep inside they were burning and everyone was rendered speechless. I was uncomfortable and went outside to confirm whether the news was authentic or not.

Meanwhile, I saw a huge number of people marching to greet our heroes. I had my lunch early and started my journey towards Bewora, the village to which other rebel namely Maqsood belonged. As I was moving towards the destination, a sea of people regardless of gender and age marched through the fields and orchards braving the chill of chilai kalan and the deep snow. The zeal and enthusiasm I saw in the people was priceless. As soon as I reached the nearby village, the streets, roads and roofs were full of people with bleak faces, the wailing women, the passionate youth waiting for their beloved ones in falling snow was the moment that took away my breath and that day I understood that Freedom will soon kiss our feet. Insha Allah!

As we marched with the procession towards the native village of Maqsood, the alleys of his village had their heads held high with pride for giving birth to such a brave son, who proved to be a curse for oppression and tyrants. The people had gathered to have the glimpse of their beloved hero. Soon the Sun started peeping through clouds to assist the people to have the look of the martyr. All the people had only one thing to say about Maqsood: “he was courageous and symbol of bravery and resistance”. It took almost five hours to arrange the funeral procession. After offering funeral prayers, the body was taken for burial with the sea of people escorting it.

Soon after his burial, the people marched towards another village viz Satkipora to which belonged our dear brother Abid. His funeral was attended by thousands of people who were addressed by his father, the man of patience and determination who narrated some incidents of Abid’s life. Abid was then laid to rest in the graveyard of his village and everyone returned back with moist eyes with the hope that this wretched part of the globe will soon stand like the rest.

Leave a Comment