Beerwah: Under a canopy placed a few meters from an under construction house, people console the family of Tanveer Ahmad Wani. The young man was killed by a bullet fired at him by army troopers on Friday. Everyone who visits the family decries the forces’ action, and express anger, frustration and helplessness.
None of it seemingly matters to Gulshan, the 50-year-old mother whose wails travel to the end of the neighborhood through its narrow streets.
“Why did you leave? I was ready to die with you. You were the sole reason for me to live. How could you leave me alone? The people are coming and leaving but my eyes keep looking for you. I am sure you will come and take me along,” she screamed.
She has lost a son, a caretaker, the bread-earner; most of all she has lost the hope of winning against her heart ailment she has been struggling with for 25 years.
“You have taken a lead. You left me without a notice and put a scar on my heart. We shall meet, we have to meet. Though you have been martyred still we have to meet,” she wailed.
Abdul Quyoom is a tailor in the neighbourhood. Tanveer worked with him for years. He laments that in the youth the neighbourhood had lost a leader. “He organized iftaar parties during Ramazan. He would devote time to go home to home for the collection of funds for certain communal activities,” said Qayoom. “He was a God-fearing soul.”
Amid the male mourners sits Tanveer’s father, Mohammad Akber Wani. The 55-year-old father survived a tumor detected a decade ago, but rendered him unable to do manual labour. Men console him, but their words betray the lack of belief in their sonsoling.
Wani tells me about his tribulations. “I was sick in 2007 when my children were too young to work,” Wani said. “But they said goodbye to studies and started working. Every penny they earned was spent for my treatment. Medicines were expensive.”
Tanveer started tailoring in the neighborhood. Now it was his 7th year in the profession. But on July 21, army men shot him dead and took away the only source of earning for the Wani family.
“I went through a surgery at SHMS hospital Srinagar and have been asked not to work. It was Tanveer who was running the home and meeting our needs. His hard work made his elder sister’s marriage possible in 2016. He was my hope, my backbone, my doctor, my medicine,” Wani said, eyes moistened in desperation. He pauses for a while before he says three more words: “We are devastated.”
The family has registered a case (FIR no 74/17 under section 307) against the army in Police Station Beerwah. The FIR reads that an army patrolling party of 53-RR hit Tanveer with bullets on his head and he died on the spot.