Pellet gun victims

As the situation across the Kashmir Valley is heading towards normalcy, the pain of pellet guns continues to haunt many. The list seems endless…

A woman in her forties from north Kashmir’s Sopore (in Baramulla district), around 50 kilometres from the heart of the Srinagar city, had pellets hit almost all over her body. Her eye, chin, throat, legs and foot all were hit by the pellets.

Narrating the incident she said that a protest rally was carried out in their area immediately after the killing of Hizbul Mujahdeen commander Burhan Muzaffar Wani along with his two associates in south Kashmir on July 8. Since then around 100 people lost their lives and several sustained injuries and many were hit by pellets. Continuing further she said, as the rally reached near her house, she came out to offer water to the people participating in the rally. The moment she came out, clashes broke out between locals and the security forces and police, who inturn resorted to firing. Several people sustained injuries and she too was hit by pellets, as told to Milli Gazette. A bike standing nearby too was set ablaze, she added.

Though some injured have been treated, others are still in the process of being treated. Her brother-in-law who works as a medical assistant took out some pellets from her body. “Once pellets are taken out, they leave behind scars on the body and it pains a lot,” shared the woman. The mother of two children said that she even consulted a doctor who told her that the pain was due to the infection casued by the pellet injuries.

Meanwhile, the Democratic Freedom Party (DFP) chairman Shabir Ahmad Shah in a press statement here on November 21 said that he has adopted Insha Mushtaq, the 14-year-old girl from south Kashmir’s Sedu-Shopian district who lost her eyesight completely after being hit by pellets in July this year. Shah said that he will take care of Insha like his own daughters till his last breath. “From now, she is my third daughter,” the statement quoting Shah said. Pertinently, Shah on November 18 announced to donate his eyes after his death to those whose eyesight was snatched by pellets. Shah is languishing in Raj Bagh police station over the past four months. Shah appealed to doctors, youths and medical experts to start a campaign to start an eye bank in the state. Shah’s family members including his wife, daughters, elder brother and sister visited Insha’s residence to adopt her (November 28). Insha left for Mumbai for treatment on December 4 and was accompanied by her parents and Shah’s wife Dr. Bilquees. The eye-specialist had reportedly called her for a thorough check-up.

Even JKLF chief Mohammad Yasin Malik visited Insha at her residence (November 29) and interacting with her parents said that tall claims of Prime Minister Narendra Modi like ‘Beti Bachav Beti Padav’ fall flat here. “My heart pains to see Insha wearing dark glasses,” he had been quoted as saying.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-31 December 2016 on page no. 10

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