Srinagar: A sudden death of a Kashmiri man and his burial in Pakistan has once again underscored the tragedy of the national borders that the 1947 Partition created in the Valley.
30-year-old Ashiq Hussain Tantray of the remote Ladervan village in Kupwara, about three-hour drive from Pakistan-administered Kashmir, left his home to visit his relatives in that country on December 4, 2016. After a month, Tantray while on his way back to India died at Lahore, before he could have crossed over to this side through the Wagah border in Amritsar.
His aged mother Raja Begum said she had denied his son permission for two years for visiting the Pakistani side but he would keep persuading her to relent.
“After my son’s death I realised that the soil of Pakistan was waiting for his body. I am pained that I cannot have a last glimpse of my son,” she told Kashmir Reader.
Tantry was to return home 10 days earlier, but he had postponed his return. To send his body home required legal and medical formalities, including an autopsy, which would have delayed his burial.
“I was told it would take more than a week for my son’s body to reach home. Then I granted permission to my relatives to bury him there,” Dilshada said.
Tantray had gone to see his relatives, among them his maternal uncle, who migrated to Pakistan during the Partition and other relatives who left the Valley’s Keran sector during the peak years of militancy in 1990.
Tantray’s father, a government employee, was killed by government forces in 1994 in the Kupwara massacre, said his cousin Jaffar Hussain.
“It is painful that we cannot perform Ashiq’s last rites despite being just 3 hours’ drive away from Muzaffarabad. It is tragic,” he said.