Forgotten Victims

Forgotten Victims
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Countless people in Kashmir became victims of the pellet fury that was unleashed in the year 2016. While there was genuine outrage and even empathy for the victims of this fury, but it would appear that the plight of these hapless victims has fallen off the radar of our society. If an analogy might be employed to put into perspective the nature of the humungous problems faced by these victims, it is akin to the tedious and expensive care that is required after a surgery. It is said by some that post-op care is the most difficult, delicate, time consuming and financially draining part. Now returning to the theme of the victims of pellet fury, restoring eyesight, carving out pellets from sensitive parts of the body and then recovery is an intense and expensive process. At times, care and treatment for the issues and problems raised by pellets is not available locally. Victims have to either go outside for comprehensive treatment which adds a logistical burden to the emotional and financial one- huge in their own right. Society is totally negligent towards these victims. Kashmir being Kashmir, anyone can , at anytime, become a victim of conditions that obtain here. We , as a society, then owe a duty of care to victims . However, what is observed is that we have become self absorbed to the point of obliviousness to the plight of the unfortunate. This is both a general and a particular point. Generally speaking, there are innumerable people in Kashmir who constitute the vulnerable and the unfortunate- economically and financially. When adversity hits them, these victims are the mercy of events and people with society turning a blind eye to them. Particularly, the victims of the conflict and the conditions that obtain in Kashmir like the pellet victims are also forgotten by the broader society. This constitutes both a tragedy and a travesty given that these people are part and parcel of society and , at the risk of repetition, they are owed a duty of care. It is about time that we take a deep breath and take recourse to introspection – the kind that enables us to develop and cultivate empathy for the hapless people. This is what our religio-cultural ethos teaches us but unfortunately, we appear to be gradually and inexorably moving far away from this ideal of empathy and compassion. Pity!

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