Srinagar, May 08: Chairperson Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP), Parveena Ahanger Sunday said Kashmiri mothers like her don’t have any expectations from women chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Mehbooba Mufti.
Speaking on the occasion of ‘Mother’s Day’, celebrating an ‘overlooked diversity’ of woman in Kashmir, Ahanger expressed her views on ‘being a woman’ at a local cafe here. Ahanger whose son ‘disappeared’ in 1990’s said that she has no expectations from Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in bringing back dear ones (disappeared persons) of thousands of Kashmiri mothers back home. “Mufti Sayeed did not stay here. Neither will Mehbooba. She calls me her mother. But she won’t understand our pain,” Ahanger said. “Mufti has sent her daughters to other countries and that she doesn’t know the pain of losing a child that is shared by thousands of woman in Kashmir.”
Ahanger moistened eyes of more than 50 women from different walks of life who sat at Goodfellas Cafe, to express their idea of ‘being a Woman in Kashmir.’ The women gathered to celebrate the resilience, achievement and individual struggles of women.
“I am no leader. I am a victim. But I will fight till my last breath. I will fight so this new generation doesn’t go through what we went through,” said Ahanger. Ahanger shared her ordeal of being a mother of her disappeared son Yasir and pain of many other women like Mogal Maas, Haja Apa, Jana begum and many more. Happy with her usual life, Ahanger said she had not moved beyond Lal Chowk. “But the disappearance of my son took me beyond mental, geographical and political boundaries,” Ahangar said.
She also said that interns from Delhi and other countries come to her and work with APDP. Disappointed with the students of Kashmir, she said, “Interns from rest of India or world come from to us. They learn about us. It is shameful on part of Kashmir University students who never come to us, to fight with us,” he said.
Hajra who hails from Bandipore in north Kashmir says every day of her life is a doomsday and every memory of her children strikes like a bullet in her heart.
“Two of my sons were killed in custody and two were subjected to enforced disappearance. This is how my destiny treated me. Today, as I look back I cannot even gather the pieces of my devastated and destroyed world. May be, I cannot get to meet my children in this world but I am sure when I will breathe for the last time they will be there for me,” Hajira said.Twelve years back in 2003 young Tariq Ahmad Lone a sixth standard student from Handwara region of Kupwara became a victim of enforced disappearance leaving his parents shocked and devastated.
“My son wanted to study and become a successful person so that he could support his father and help his family. He was a student of 6th standard. At a younger age of 14 or 15, he started working as a conductor to provide financial support to his family,” recalled Tariq’s mother Aamina. “We did not leave a single stone unturned to seek whereabouts. We even visited graveyards in search of him,” Aamina said and broke down.
She added, “My husband could not bear this pain and died and after his death I fought this battle alone and found myself in the middle of helplessness quite often. “Tariq was too young to leave us alone. What was his fault, for what crime was he punished.”