The Land Of
Widows And Orphans
By Pradeep Mohinder
02 March, 2007
of women, disappearance, illegal detain,threatening at gun point, molestation,
loot and terrorising raids by security forces and by unknown gunmen
have been a day to day phenomena in Kashmir valley and in border districts
Seventeen years of turmoil
has not only ruined the Jammu Kashmir economically but, has turned the
valley in to the land of widows and orphans. It is matter of fact that
that in state there are more than twenty-five thousand orphans (25,000)
and approximately six thousand 6000 widows in state but Central and
State government are un aware of this amazing and horrifying fact and
they only have data of arms and ammunition recovered or militants gun
down by security forces during search operations.
The most affected and neglected
areas are border districts, like Kupwara, Anantnag, Pulwama and Baramulla
in the valley and Rajouri, Poonch and Udhampur in Jammu region.
These women has not lost
only their husbands but also source of livelihood with them.These poverty
struck women have nothing to feed their children and number of other
insecuries hunt them in the absence of their husband.
The people of the state are
not only harassed and raped by unknown gunmen but even India army is
doing the same.
In 1991 Indian army raped
30 women in Kunan- Poshpura in Kupwara aged between 18 to 85 years,
but till the date these women has got no compensation nor justice from
the government. Even young girls who were yet to be married are still
awaiting that some day some one will come to marry them and they are
living in cow sheds and waiting for justice.
If one will visit the Deevar,
Sogam, Dardpora and other villages of border district Kupwara will find
hundred of widows and thousand of orphans at the mercy of god. One of
the widows from village Dardpora named Shakeela said “I have three
children. My husband was taken for interrogation in 1994 and after few
days his body was found in the jungle. He was killed with bullets pumped
into his body. After his death I have no other option other than to
beg or to go for illicit activities.
It is matter of concern that
most of the married women face the problem of miscarriages, which is
one of the fastest growing problem in the rural and border areas of
state yet to be noticed by the health department of state.
The young widows and teenaged
orphan girls are facing more problems due to their youth as they are
always at danger of molestation and getting raped.
One of the widow Reehana
aged 22 from Deever said “being young I am always being harassed
and molested both by security forces and renegade and that has become
the day to day routine. Even though I am educated still I cannot go
out to work because of all this”.
Even the NGOs, which are
trying to help them, are not able tro perform well because of government
hurdles. Ghulam Nabi a tailor at J&K Yateem Trust Craft Centre,
in the village Deevar said, “Even though these girls get free
tranning in tailoring , they are not able to earn their livelihood as
the village has limited resources and government has done nothing to
facilitate their skill .
Safe means of livelihood
for these widows and orphans is very important otherwise, when the young
boys and girls grow up in such deprived condition either they will definitely
follow the gun culture or fall victims to the pimps.