By Basit Bilal
SRINAGAR: A voluntary group is reaching out to Kashmiri people in financial distress in various parts of India by taking to the social networking site Facebook. The group which has created a page under the name `Kashmiris Beyond Borders’ is managing financial help to the Kashmiris stuck in various places outside J&K and are not able to get financial support from their families due to prevailing situation in Kashmir.
“The model we are following is to create a databank of both contributors and distress callers in different cities and towns. As much as possible, we will try to solve local problems locally. For example, if someone calls us from Jodhpur and he needs Rs 5,000, and we have a contributor from Jodhpur who is willing to pay us Rs 10,000, we will simply ask him/her to hand over the required amount. If he/she can’t do it himself/herself, and nor can he /she go to receive it from him/her, we will arrange someone to pick the money and hand it over,” latest message on the FB page of the group said.
“We are doing this because local arrangements are the most efficient and fastest, and will require no banking or other charges,” the message reads.
“In addition, we will try to keep some funds with us in Delhi so that we can help people in Delhi as well as in places where we have no contributors,” the page reads.
In a message to the contributors, the group has asked them to either give their name, address or contact details, as well as the amount they are willing to contribute, or they can send their contribution to us in Delhi. “In case you are feeling very generous, you can do both. All help is much appreciated,” it said.
Giving the details, the group says that it has contributors in Ayodhya, Faizabad, Bangalore, Delhi-NCR, Jammu, Kolkata, Mumbai, Pune.
In a message for non-Kashmiris, the group says: While Kashmir is under siege, many Kashmiri girls and boys studying outside have had no way to communicate with folks back home. The same applies to people who were on short trips to different places in India. Many of them are in need of money, for food, lodging, travelling back home etc.
“Kashmiris have started several initiatives to provide relief to those in distress. Ours is also a small effort to help whoever we can. In less than two days, we have received more than two dozen distress calls. We are overwhelmed. Your generous contribution can help somebody in dire straits,” the message reads.
The group is however accepting contributions only from people who believe in their struggle.
“This is a political issue for us. We are seeking help only from people in solidarity with the movement of Azadi in J&K. If you do not think Kashmiris have the right to self-determination, we do not want your money. We have a slogan: “Aadhi roti khayeingay, sar nahi jhukayeingay.” Thank you,” another message of the group reads.
Some members of the group are Mudasir (8800285163), Basharat (8130375765), Arif (7838258993) and Khalid (9403856014).
On Facebook, the group has adopted the modified picture of a Bollywood film Kashmir ki Kali, in which the actress Sharmila Tagore has been shown with a bandaged eye hit by a pellet!