Srinagar: Insha Malik, a girl from Shopian who was blinded when a trooper fired a full cartridge of pellets into her face, has asked the chairperson of State Women’s Commission whether she can still pursue her dream of becoming a doctor.
Probably aware of what has befell her, she also asked Nayeema Mehjoor if not a doctor she would like to become a lawyer.
“Insha is in trauma and was not willing to talk at first. She doesn’t want to go to Kashmir because of the atrocities people are facing here,” said Mehjoor, who said she spent three hours with the girl in Mumbai, where she is being treated.
“Many people have faced atrocities here and how can we remain alive? That’s why she said Kashmir is not a good place,” she said while admitting that “excessive force” was used for which she “felt ashamed before Insha.”
Insha suffered horrific pellet injuries in her entire face after a trooper fired at her when she was looking out of a window of her home in Sedav village of Shopian.
The picture showing her disfigured face became one of the iconic images of the state repression during the raging uprising.
Her parents explained to Mehjoor how the forces attacked their unarmed daughter, who was not part of any protests.
“She was not carrying stones or was not part of any protest. She was studying at home that time,” her parents told Mehjoor. Her mother wept and said they don’t need anything but “give her eyes back.”
“Insha told me ‘I want to move forward, do I have to compromise on my education’. I told her it is unfortunate but you should move ahead bravely,” Mehjoor said, adding, “Her teeth have also got damaged and she has a scar on her head.”
Mehjoor, the former BBC broadcaster, termed Insha as a brave girl and said her parents have come to terms with what happened to their daughter.
“They want an end to the excessive force. They are helpless. It is a dilemma for them for the entire life. We have to take her out of trauma,” she said describing her interaction with Insha as “painful”.
Mehjoor said Insha asked her to pray for her.
“We can take her to outside India so that she can regain her eyesight in one eye. A Mumbai-based NGO Sarhad is willing to help her,” she added.