SRINAGAR: Weeping and cursing his own self for being caught by the army on Friday night, when news of Burhan’s death in Kokernag spread across the Valley and he, Abdul Majid, a mentally challenged man from Shopian, went out in anger to protest Burhan’s killing.
Majid’s village (name withheld for security reasons) is six kilometres from the main Shopian town. On Friday night it was the site of heavy clashes between forces and local people in which a dozen people sustained minor to major injuries.
“That day our village exploded in rage. From children to women, old men, everybody came on roads to express their anger,” said Majid’s brother Mohammad Ashraf.
Ashraf said that after the clashes ended in their village, Majid was nowhere to be seen. The family searched for him for hours in the night but could not find him.
“We were apprehensive that he may have been kidnapped or killed by the forces, but at the same time we thought that his mental condition may have caused him to lose his way,” Ashraf said.
“In the scary night and at risk of being caught by the forces which were making rounds in the area, we continued his search, in vain. After midnight my phone rang and I heard shocking and painful news,” Ashraf said.
“I arranged a vehicle and rushed to the (nearby) village. My brother had been severely beaten up by forces. His chin and thigh bone had been fractured due to the ruthless beating. We immediately brought him here,” the brother recounted.
Majid’s thigh bone was broken into half – into two pieces — and the thigh is now plastered all over. A surgery has been performed to repair his chin a day ago, even as Majid was suffering the agony of his broken thigh bone.
Ashraf said, “They caught and showered lathis upon my disabled brother. They should have let him go as one can easily see, even from far away, that the person is mentally challenged. But they showed that they have no humanity left.”
Ashraf is worried by their poor economic condition. The family survives day to day and now it has to bear the burden of Majid’s treatment.
“From where shall I bring the huge amount of money to have my brother treated? We have already spent a huge sum on the treatment of his mental illness. Only god knows what will happen now,” sighed Ashraf.
The doctors treating Majid say that “injuries are grave” and it will take months or even years for him to return to normal shape.
“Initially he needs rest for more than six months. The patient will have to bear pain as the injuries are serious,” the doctor said.