Book Review-Curfewed Nights

By Shajr Gulshan

Kashmir is undoubtedly a burning topic for debate among intellectual circles and best writing material for the writers with conscience. Different writers write in their own perceptive about Kashmir, but the virtue of  book named “Curfewed nights” by Basharat peer has given us a new approach, a new experience of  which perhaps till date none any writer has been able to give it such an apt tongue. It is a book of novelist taste, author writes in a courageous way, the multiple natures of situations, and the conditions which are faced by a Kashmir till date. The book is distributed in fifteen chapters besides the epilogue at the end. After reading this book, the contents clearly depict it is the story of every Kashmiri .On his part, writer has put his all efforts to recollect his childhood scenes in it. Many books about Kashmir are in market, some are written by its veteran writers and some by outsiders, most of the books by outsiders prick a Kashmir’s conscience that what has written is a partial truth, what those writers have written, is their experiences due to their short duration stay in Kashmir, but peer has unarguably mottled his book with the colors of objectivity and integrity. Curfewed Nights is about Kashmir conflict in the eye of contemporary writer rather than the chronicle of rulers. I fought my tears the moment I took the book for reading and finally tears ooze out from  my eyes, heart stop breathing for a while and voice get choked so me remained stagnant as statue when the situations of  Kashmir dance before my mind’s eye. How would have a mother reacted while seeing her son becoming a suicide bomber under thrust of  armed personnel; where the subconscious lion’s courage submerged over women’s fragility not to take them her second son and how the high class officials rug the same violence victims with their nonsense laxity and bankruptness. Peer writes how a Kashmiri student observes his own future ruining in the hands of outsiders and how he preferred his well-being over his career. The book throws light on burning fact as to how only bureaucrats are able to send their wards outside valley for study, and on contrary the quest of  rest remain unquenched for the times to come and as to how after every minute a Kashmiri is born again. As a result a lot of people wanted war as they think it’ll be better than dying slowly every day. Peer wrote how a Kashmiri is labeled with the allegations, Geelani (one of   his Kashmiri acquaintance) a college lecturer at Delhi was sentenced to death, his words on hearing sentence were “without justice,there’ll be no democracy “.The book also highlights the burning facet on how a Kashmiri has given a different treat both inside as well as outside Kashmir, and both treats attempt to prove him, guilty. Here in Kashmir ,he is frisked by the alien men in uniform for his identity,……and there outside his facial texture make next person to utter ,”are u Kashmiri”, who is seen with terrorist looks and scared by everyone touched with the intention of  being suicide bomber. Here homes are blown with explosives and ammunitions, and there he is not having a little space to stay anywhere. He is stranger in his so called own country India. And a wild beast in the beautiful sanctuary called Kashmir. The author didn’t forget to write that, how a vale of heaven get metamorphosed into vale of horrors, the vale of absences, where one is encountered with the deserted lanes and market places where pandit houses are changed into mere bunkers where temples find their place in filth and shabbiness And there pundits are living a slum life with meager jobs. How a Kashmiri women are insecure in her own homeland even under the refuge of her husband and among her kith and kins. How a Kashmiri is helpless in so called democratic India, how draconian and black laws provide weapons of draconian ideas and methodologies to armed men to swap the minds of Kashmiri with horror and fear and how these laws have aftermath psychological effects on same people. After going through this book a reader can best analyze why the present protests, slogans, hartals are observed in Kashmir. This book is must read for every class of  society, and every region of  country and particularly the youth of  Kashmir born after 90’s.Curfewed nights is only a minute part of  the Kashmir’s untold stories what is happening and why is happening in Kashmir are much beyond one’s imaginations. After going through this book one can find himself a new man with a new experience, a new perception and new outlook

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