If you read my post in the morning I had prayed that no life should be lost today. Alas! The prayer went unheard. As I type this two boys 9 and 17 are preparing for their final journey. Killed for protesting against the killing of one of their own. What do u do in such a situation.

I planned to stay at home today as all of us were expecting heavy restrictions by the government in the wake of a protest march against the killing of 3 youth at Sopore. As the day progressed it became apparent that the government has taken a lenient view of the situation. Friends and family called to say things are good. I had some urgent work at office and a friend offered to drop me there. As I travelled the distance I could see people on the streets, Shops closed, no public transport, only a few private vehicles plying around. There was that tension in the air, the one when one gets a whiff of bad news.

I wondered how definitions change. This was what we were calling NORMAL. The scene was sufficient to scare the hell out of someone but we Kashmiris called it normal. Scary indeed. As I returned a few hours later as advised by my family/ colleagues/friends without completing my work I could see the gathering storm. News of deaths had already spread. The anger was on the streets as we passed a military truck my heart missed a beat. What if they feel threatened by a sound or stone? I was sure what they would do next train their guns on me. Three guys on a motorbike overtook us. I cursed them on their stupidity and started praying for our collective safety. They were smarter as they took a right turn avoiding the truck. The way they were looking at the truck revealed we were thinking the same thing. I asked my friend to follow suit but he was unrelenting as I kept pleading we passed the truck. Thank God nothing happened.

This kind of life was a routine in the 90’s when I was a child and would probably go nowhere unaccompanied. Things had changed for better especially in the last few years when the armed struggle changed into a peaceful one. In a few moments I was back in the 90’s. This was a two decade leap but in the wrong direction. The news from the local TV station (government controlled) is coming on right now has the death on the last of the list. The first headline is Indian PM meets Obama. The Chief Minister of the state and other ministers are seen in various functions as if the deaths are having no effect.

8 Kashmiri civilians have now been killed in incidents involving Indian security forces in less than 3 weeks. Each death has sparked protests leading to more killings by the troops.

The so called elected head of the state has not visited even a single tragedy befallen family. He can’t, it should clear the status of his representation.

I again pray to God that no one is killed anymore but at the same time I know that it can’t happen till we are occupied. God save us from the occupier and set our land free.


Dearest Nusrat,

Indeed, it is cause for alarm when senseless killing of youth become "normal". The killing must stop and the world must pay attention. Keep raising your voice Nusrat, so that others can hear your story and the stories of the youth who can no longer speak for themselves as their lives have been taken unjustly.

"Collateral damage" has no heart. "Collateral damage" keeps "us" and "them" separated. Sigh.

Take care of you. love and hugs K-lee

K-lee Starland, Ph.D.

It's hard to find words of comfort in situations such as this; often complicated when there is blood shed. Any blood shed is no go, but particularly when children, innocent children, our future... snuffed short. I try not to question WHY God allowed this happen and try understand the devil of man in the details. Our hearts will ache, and time may heal wounds, but the blood of children remain on the souls who did the deed.

I will, Nusrat, remain in prayer with you, that all of this can find it's way away and peace can finally unpack her bags and hug us all.


Joan AkA SunFish

Look for the message in the mess!

Thanks for the support. It is a bit comforting to believe that gulity will be punished anyhow even though facts are to the contrary. The rare human rights violation cases filed are still pending, some for decades with no hope of justice being delivered.


With best wishes,

Nusrat Ara 


I am so sorry to hear this... These senseless acts of violence are ruining our families, youth and world as a whole. As i read your posts i feel your pain and send you prayers of healing. I live in the United States and we have the same thing, police violence and crime against one another. I am hopiong for peace around the world, for us to embrace one another and learn from one another.

I am holding an event in the New York City area on Womens voices. It will be a global project on letter writing by women. I would love to have your post on the wall for all to read and share in your daily life. I posted a need and call for it on pulse. Feel free to pass it around. I am hoping to get many letters from many women. The more voices the better.

Love and Peace always, Mia

Dear Mia,

The situation turned to worse with more than 50 people being killed ,mostly teenagers. I have been unable to make a post yet.

Your Voices project sounds good and I think I have seen something about it already , will check it again and also pass on.

And yes thanks for the kind words and understanding our plight.


With best wishes,

Nusrat Ara 


Dear Nusrat,

I am so sorry to hear about your plight. please let me know if there is anything i can do. My prayers are with you and your people at this time. I send peavce and love. Hope to hear from you soon.

Be safe