SHOPIAN: The second girl injured by bullets during the January 24 encounter in Shopian’s Choigund Adoo village is also battling for life. Sumy Jan, 21, was hit by a bullet in her head during the encounter in which two militants died and Saima Wani, the sister of one of the militants, sustained a bullet injury to which she later succumbed in hospital. Sumy Jan’s parents told Kashmir Reader that she underwent two surgeries at SKIMS Soura and then was discharged from the hospital. However, she is unable to even move to the washroom, which has forced her parents to make arrangements on the bed she is confined to.
Sumy’s father, Ghulam Hassan Bhat, said that the two surgeries, medicines and other expenses cost him Rs 2 lakh. “I don’t know how she survived; it is Allah’s mercy. My daughter was shot at by (government) forces when she was inside her room. When my two sons tried to take their sister to hospital, they were stopped by the forces. My injured daughter was dragged by them (the forces) after they fired pellets on her, which are still inside her body,” Bhat said.
The bed Sumy is restricted to now is right beside the window through which the bullet struck her. Wincing in pain, she told Kashmir Reader, “The world since then has turned into hell. There is not a single night when I have slept comfortably. The severe pain makes me cry, but I cannot take a single step on my own.”
Ghulam Hassan Bhat has a single-storey house in which a nine-member family lives. He earns his livelihood by rearing sheep.
“I have three kanals of land but that fetches me only the expenses of fertilisers and pesticides. I was somehow making ends meet but my flock of 40 sheep was destroyed during the encounter, when the rebels hid in my cowshed,” he lamented.
He said retrieved the bodies of 17 sheep and of a calf but does not know what happened to the rest.
Bhat said that Sumy had been engaged a few months ago and the family had been preparing for the wedding. The forces, he said, looted the ornaments he had kept for the wedding of his only daughter. “As soon as the encounter was over, they stole my daughter’s ornaments, plus Rs 50,000 in cash, blankets and several other objects from my house,” he said.
Senior Superintendent of Police Shopian, Ambarkar Shriram Dinkar, when asked about the family’s allegation that government forces stole gold ornaments, blankets, LCD and other objects during the operation, said, “I don’t think so. Why would they do so?”
“If they have any complaint, they can come to the police and we will register their complaint,” he added.
Saleema Banoo, Sumy’s mother, said she was in the kitchen when the bullet hit her daughter. “My two sons tried to take her to hospital but were stopped midway by the forces. I cried at them to let my children go but they didn’t listen. After dragging Sumy, they (the forces) threw her outside the village, where some local boys took her to hospital,” she said.
Banoo said that Sumy seemed to have developed some psychiatric problem. “She doesn’t remember things told to her just five minutes before. She doesn’t behave normally now,” the distressed mother said.
“We were advised by the doctors to take her for a check-up on the 19th of this month,” Bhat said. “The doctors told us that it will take several months for Sumy to recover. We were told that she has damages in her brain caused by the bullet. I fear she may not survive.”