VINOD SINGH NEGI
It’s a Sunday and Valentine’s day too. I am in the safety of my home far away from Kashmir, relaxing, though the Kashmiri journalist whatsapp groups keep me connected to the place, I love. After weeks of non stop work today is probably a relaxed day (before Monday blues!), I surf the channels and settle for ‘Mother India’ on Zee Classic, more nationalistic movies like ‘Karma’ lined up later.
A notification comes up on the mobile, a Kashmiri Journalist Group, reporting an encounter in Pulwama; a local militant Adil is reported to have been killed. Meanwhile, in ‘Mother India’, Birju (Sunil Dutt) has stolen a rifle to kill the cunning, blood sucking, ‘Lala’ and is trying to hide it at home. He is met with stiff resistance from his mother (Nargis Dutt), brother (Rajendra Kumar) and sister in law. Heated arguments of the ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ ensue. Nargis snatches the rifle and goes about breaking it. Meanwhile, Rajendra Kumar indulges in hand to hand fighting with Sunil Dutt, sustains injures and falls unconscious. The family is able to prevent Sunil Dutt from gaining possession of the rifle. Thereafter, the ‘mother’ does her best to desist Sunil Dutt from becoming a dacoit, though fails. Sunil Dutt runs away, becomes a dacoit, comes and kills the infamous ‘Lala’ during his daughter’s wedding. Even during his misdemeanors of his, his mother (though a victim of Lala’s atrocities and greed) resists him tooth and nail. Finally, Sunil Dutt wants to take away the Lala’s daughter, as spoils of the loot. The ‘mother’ vows and protects the ‘Lala’s daughter and her modesty, to the extent of killing her son (Sunil Dutt).
These scenes from ‘Mother India’ and the concurrent happenings in Pulwama reminded me as to how a total break down of the value system has occurred in the Kashmir Valley. ‘Adab’ and ‘Lihaaz’ is fast becoming extinct, the children just not listening to their parents, and falling prey to religious radicalization, drug addiction and scores of other social evils.
The power of social networking is acting as a force multiplier to the anti-national and anti- social elements thus aggravating things. Vested interests ‘batting’ for the separatist and flush with funds from across, are planting ‘false’ narratives of ‘jehad’ and perceived atrocities in the mind of the gullible youths. The effect is but apparent on ground especially in South Kashmir, with the hundreds of radicalized youths joining the terrorist ranks in a couple of years, their survivability being not more than a year or two. A recent report talked of about 75,000 drug addicts in Kashmir including 4000 women. One can but wonder, its so easy to lure a youth into join the militant ranks in Kashmir, instant self gratification, grievances on account of poor governance, religious radicalization, sense of purpose or just easy money and power being causative factors.
Wish the family system and values in Kashmir strengthens. Especially the ‘mothers’ need to take lead into getting their wards into the righteous path. The unflinching Nargis Dutt of Mother India could be their inspiration and the leading light. No amount of suffering could blur her vision of the right and wrong and she put in untiring efforts to ensure that her wards are virtuous, with non-violence being the core value. To the mothers of Kashmir, please rise and take charge, its time to tell your loved lads ‘ O ! Mere Laal Aa Jaa’, Amen ! may you succeed , Inshallah !
The writer has his own views and it does not belong to the Kashmir Scenario
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