Pellet plight:  Meet Umar, Adil: Last hope of two families, lost

Ward number 8 of SMHS hospital is once again witnessing a surge in pellet victim cases, as clashes were witnessed at many places after an encounter that broke out in Bijbehara area of Anantnag on Friday.

Among 18 cases of eyes injuries that were brought to SMHS on Friday at around 5 cases are still admitted in this ward with grave injuries and are still undergoing treatment.

There are two cases in ward number 8, admitted on Friday. The duo was hit by pellets in South Kashmir’s Anantnag and Kulgam areas, both the cases have got some things in common: both are hit by pellets in their left eye, both are lone bread earners for their family. Both, as per the family, were not part of any protests when pellets were fired upon them.

Meet sober, thoughtful Umar

Umar Yousuf (22) hailing from South Kashmir’s Kulgam area, was hit by pellets in his left eye. On Friday he was brought to SHMS, where doctors declared that his left eye was totally damaged.

Driver by profession, Umar was not part of any protest as his family said. “He was just sitting on the sideways,” says Altaf Ahmad, Umar’s brother in law, who was accompanying him.

Umar while recalling that fateful moment says that in a flash, I saw that I was hit in my left eye and the blood was oozing our profusely. “I don’t know what happened after that, and I opened my eyes in this ward,” he said.

As of now, he cannot see with his left eye, which is totally damaged. “He has lost his left eye, but we will operate him in coming days to see if we can get back some percentage of his vision,” said a doctor on duty.

Umar is a lone bread earner of his family, “now he has been rendered handicapped for the rest of his life,” said Altaf. 

“I don’t know why was I targeted, I was not protesting, I was not pelting stones, why was I targeted?” asks Umar, while tears roll down from his eyes.

The only thing that Umar keeps on thinking is that ‘who is going to earn for his family now?’ “These thoughts keep him wide awake, they (forces) have ruined his life,” says Altaf, while wiping Umar’s tears off.


Meet silent, observant Adil

Sitting silently on hospital bed, with his left eye covered with bandage, Adil Ahmad (24), from South Kashmir’s Harnag area, underwent a surgery in his left eye, yesterday, with doctors saying that he too has lost his left eye completely.

By profession, Adil is a carpenter, who earns his living by making wardrobes and dressing tables, but now that seems to be a distant dream for him.

Like Umar, he too was not part of any protest and was returning home, when pellets hit his left eye.

“He was returning home, in the midway, protests erupted and Adil was caught in the frenzy,” said Rafiq Ahmad, a relative attending Adil.

Like, Umar, Adil too is a lone bread earner for his family, but now he is caught in the quagmire of what has happened to his life, suddenly and out of his expectations.

His family says that he has stopped talking to them from Friday and replies in just ‘yes’ or ‘no’, “I don’t know what happened to him, he does not talk to me,” said Adil’s mother, with tears in her eyes.

Doctors on duty say that Adil is in deep trauma and will come out of it, “losing an eyes is not an easy thing, it takes a huge toll on one’s psyche,” said a doctor, adding “there might some other issues that he might be thinking about.”

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