Friday, November 16, 2018 | 12:51 AM


Thousands of Kashmiri mothers awaiting disappeared sons

Sunday, May 13, 2018
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When most parts of the world are observing Mother’s Day, today, thousands of Kashmiri women continue to wait for the return of their sons killed in fake encounters or subjected to disappearance in custody by Indian troops in occupied Kashmir over the past 29 years.

A report released by Kashmir Media Service on Mother’s Day, today, said that the continued Indian state terrorism had resulted in the killing of 95,002 Kashmiris including women and children from 1989 to 11th of May 2018. As many as 22,873 women have been widowed by the Indian forces and 11,071 women were raped, disgraced or molested during the period.

The report pointed out that the troops had subjected over 8,000 Kashmiris to custodial disappearance during the period and the mothers of majority of these disappeared people had been waiting for their return. Second Sunday of May is observed as Mother’s Day since 1914 as a result of continued efforts by Anna Jarvis, daughter of Ann Reeves Jarvis, a peace activist in, West Virginia, the United States, for her mother’s contributions towards the society.

Meanwhile, as Jammu Kashmir Employees Movement Chairman Muhammad Shafi Lone in a statement said, with the world celebrating Mother’s Day on May 13, Kashmir and its mothers had reason to mourn as many mothers have died by Indian occupation forces in the years – waiting for their sons who left home and never returned. Haseena Begum, he added, died on 5 October 2013 whose son Syed Anwar Shah disappeared on 21 July 2000, when he was arrested by troops in Srinagar. Anwar was a wall painter by profession.

The Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) led by Parveena Ahanger stated that Haseena along with her son’s half widow was fighting for the whereabouts of her lone son for 13 years. The APDP statement says:

Mahtaba Begum hailing from Kashmir’s far-off village Karhama died while looking for her son who was arrested during a crackdown in 1990. Her son Mohammad Yaqub Khan was a laborer. Misra begum of Bemina’s boatman colony died in the desolation of her only son Shabbir Hussain Gasi who was arrested by Indian army on 21 January 2000. Hameeda Parveen died in 2012 after searching from pillar to post with the hope that her son would one day return to home. Details informed that her son, Abid Hussain, was a student.

Zoona Begum hailing from Raj Bagh whose son disappeared in May 1996 when he was detained after forces raided his house. Her son Imtiyaz Ahmad was a forester. Zoona died in 2011 while waiting for her son to return home.

Haleema Begum hailing from Batamaloo area died in February this year. She struggled for the last 23 years in search of her son, Basharat Ahmad Shah, who was studying at Aligarh Muslim University, India. Basharat was arrested on 7 January 1990 by CRPF from Sopore area.