The Mountains Are Coming Closer
(This article by me has appeared in the Sunday Guardian, Delhi, and the Friday Times, Lahore.)
The voices that reverberate in your head after a visit to Kashmir leave you numb, making you sadder the more you think about them. You know that it is going to be worse when you visit next year. The mountains that you see faintly from over the bridges on the Jhelum river in downtown Srinagar, a thousand-year-old settlement, you know they are coming closer.
An old man you see on the road wants your attention. No, not here. Let’s get inside a parked car. You wonder what secrets are to be passed on. From inside his pheran he takes out a bundle of papers. Both his sons were picked up from Kathmandu in Nepal in 2000, where they were eking out a living. Had they been militants why would they have … look, look, this paper, certificate of registration of Indian nationals in Nepal? The last he heard of his sons some years ago was that Indian intelligence had detained him in Delhi. He is coming to Delhi next month. Could you help? All he wants to know is what happened to his sons, which prison are they in, could he see them once? Read more…