Jammu and Kashmir, the enticing beauty of mother earth, the favourite tourist attraction of the world, the place that’s known worldwide because of its spectacular sceneries and captivating location! Little do we know about what this place goes through with each passing day, the experience of the locals here can never be even dreamed by a non local of here.
Literally all the people around the world want to visit this excotic beauty one day or another. Simultaneously, we are so much concerned if this place is safe for us or not. As this place is famous to be a house of terror, a place where terrorism breeds and non social activists are bored and tutored. Whenever any tourist, be it an Indian or international persona, plans a trip here, are always in a dilemma whether visiting here would be safe or not!
When I visited Kashmir along with my family, my thoughts weren’t different from any of these people. The excitement of visiting the most beautiful place of the country was another thing and the fear of bring victimised of any sudden dangerous activity was hindering our minds too. Nothing personal, but as locals residing in metropolitans and always believing in what media portrays us, we never tend to see the other side of the coin.
Similarly, whenever someone said there’s something fishy going on at the border, we would always comment that the locals residing there are guilty too.
But, how very wrong I was! During my stay at Jammu and Kashmir, a major chunk of time spent at Srinagar, I met the most loving people I have ever came across to in my entire life! Their humble hospitality, their coming out of the way and caring for you, their being ready to help at whatever time you ask for, their down to earth manner of dealing with you, spoke volumes about them being an entirely loving community.
What depressed me was why I never looked or thought upon their side of story! Imagine staying in a beautiful place but being bombarded with bullets at war time? The fear of the chances of getting killed before returning back from market, the horror of seeing hundreds of dead body in front of you when you go out to a valley for a family picnic? And most of all, the terror of the chances that your home, with all your loving family members in it, getting blown up by a bomb at any time without a warning! Going everyday to the local market and catching military officials all ready with their long guns and bullets in a position to shoot anyone who comes in front of them which may seem doubtful.
Their side of this sorry seemed most saddening to me! When they say, they don’t even know if they are free till now or not? They are still fighting for their independence, independence of safety, security of happiness! They say, they are not even involved in this fight, in this war, but still are giving sacrifices of their loved ones regularly. It’s really sad to hear that between the fight for land between two nations, these innocent locals have to bear so much! What they have seen in their lives, we haven’t even imagined in our lives. This, is what makes them so peace-loving, so bearable, so tolerable. When I was there, these locals always used to say, with teared eyes, if you can solve a problem with love and tolerance, avoid violence, it always snatches your happiness! Nobody knows the result of violence as much as we do!
From that time onwards,I changed my outlook of judging people in general! Now when someone says to me, that people residing at certain area are of certain quality, I know very well, until I stay with them, live with them, I cannot judge their lifestyles just by staying on the opposite side of the globe.
This little experience of my trip changed my outlook of the world, now I love each and every corner of the world and respect the people residing there. These all people have a story behind them which we never have bothered to hear, these people are lovely, so it the world, so is everyone around us! Hence, let’s stop discriminations and hatred, let’s say #yestotheworld!!