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A course correction needed

A course correction needed
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By: Rayees Ahmad Kumar

The Valley of Kashmir is the most beautiful and mesmerizing part of globe, popular for its enchanting beauty, resplendent lofty mountains, snow-clad hills and vast grassy green meadows.

The cool and refreshing climate even during hot summers makes it a heaven or paradise on earth. It is because of its pleasant climatic conditions that the famous Persian poet Amir Khusru has said “agar firdous bar roye zamin ast, Hame asto hame asto hame ast”.

Apart from being a top tourist destination, our valley is also the abode of hundreds of God fearing saints who have come from distant lands to preach humanity and bring the people closer to one Allah. That is why it is often referred to as Pir Waér.

However, in this part of the country, in which love, respect, mutual understanding, philanthropy and humanity once ruled in the community and society have now become the things of past. Ill-will, malice, prejudice and hate are now dominating our social fabric. It has completely lost its values and glory for which it was famous for centuries.

Sharing grief, predicament, melancholy and good times with fellow community members and neighbours was our heritage and legacy but alas we aren’t now what we were in the past. Fratricide, patricide and even matricide is reported now from each corner of the valley.

For a small patch of land our youth are committing the heinous crimes of killing their siblings. For few pennies, fathers have now become unsafe in the hands of their own sons. A number of times we have seen a son has killed his own father and then buried the dead body in an unknown place.

Drug addicts and morally degraded sons are now killing their own mothers for failing to fulfill their meager pocket money. Disloyalty among the youth planning to go for marriage against the will of their parents have resulted either in killing of one or the other partner or they silently end their lives due to suicides.

Our teenagers not knowing the value of one time gift from God often go for stunt biking and bulldoze the age old hopes of their parents and extinguish the light of their eyes and make them completely blind for rest of their life. Theft, dacoity, murder and hooliganism have now dug its roots deep here and are becoming the order of the day.

In these circumstances one wonders and asks himself the question is it the same valley which it used to be earlier? Is it same part of globe where Mir Syed Ali Hamadani (RA), Sheikh Noor din Noorani (RA), Sheikh Hamza Makhdoom (RA) and Sheikh Zanudin Wali preached centuries ago the values of humanity ? The tragic story doesn’t end here.

Let me to point out that a daughter isn’t also safe in the hands of her own father. Many a times he has either maligned her modesty or killed her for the reasons best known to him only. Jumping from the bridges in river waters by the youth to make an end of their story is a frequently witnessed phenomenon now.

Alienating old age parents and compelling them to beg on roads or in premises of religious places by their own children raised by them is an eye opener for all conscious minds. Just after marriage our own sons forget all the favours and kindnesses their parents had done for them during their whole life.

Instead of obeying them and proving a solid support for them in their old age which our religious teachings demand, they put them in further troubles. Now we see parents of even four and five sons too live alone without being cared by any of their children for none of their faults. Our daughters after tying their nuptial face worst kind of treatment at the hands of their in-laws.

Apart from the male members of the new home like father in-law and brother in-laws, they also are troubled by their own sex like sister and mother in-laws. It is really awful to see a woman being tortured by another woman in one commonly shared home under one roof. Their melancholic story doesn’t finish here. But i wouldn’t keep it veiled to tell you that even husbands are making the lives of their spouses hellish by tormenting them on one pretext or the other.

Those who were supposed to respect, honour and support their better halves are now crushing and coercing them. A number of women were killed by their in-laws and many more were forced to commit suicide in their newer homes. Demand for dowry, some times failing to bear the children and lack of compatibility between the spouses or two families are few reasons of their troubled post-married life.

The degradation of our values and the materialistic lust for money and wealth has completely blinded us. We have lost the ethical values and civic sense is almost wiped out from our sacred land. We no longer value merit, humbleness, nobility and humanity instead we encourage selfishness, swindling and adultery thereby making the society unfit for morally upright people to live in. Deviation of youth towards drugs is yet another big curse which will take a heavy toll if not bridled at an earliest. Law enforcement agencies are doing wonderful job to curb this menace but coherent and effective ways are needed to uproot it from the society.

Official report of a million youth indulging in drugs which include even girls is very alarming. Recently police have busted a couple of sex rackets in Valley which were running secretly thereby indulging in immoral and intolerable activities. Years ago such things couldn’t have been expected but today these have become reality in a place which once was considered sacred and holy.

The frequency of crime rate is increasing here with each passing day. Sir Walter Lawrence in his masterpiece “The Valley of Kashmir” has written that crime is almost negligible in Kashmir and people here are loving, helping and thoughtful. But what has polluted our social fabric, why we have got completed changed and why we have become ill-minded? These are some of the questions which we need to ponder on.

(The author is a teacher and a columnist)



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