Tag Archives: Kashmir

Khandar the Kashmiri Wedding – Part 3

Kashmiri Wedding

Kashmiri Wedding - Part 3

For those of you who have visited my blog before, you might have already read a little something about the Kashmiri Wedding here.

While preparation of food (see Khandar the Kashmiri Wedding)  is a very elaborate and lavish affair, the process of finding your soul-mate, the koshur-way is a complicated and tiring process (see Khandar the Kashmiri Wedding – Part 2. )

While talking of the match-making process, I had actually talked of how the ‘thap’ or ‘catching the bride’ is done. 🙂 [It is nothing like it sounds really – don’t start visualizing the savage men running after and catching women. It is a very simple (though in cities it can get very complicated .. but that is another topic), affair. The girl meets the boy’s family and is given a gift as a proof of consent for the marriage. Continue reading

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Sakooter or Scooter! That’s the way to go!

I just happened to read this news item in Kashmir Times. It talks of how women in Kashmir have started using scooter as a convenient means of transport and of the acceptance of the idea among the locals.  To me watching a woman drive a scooter is the idea of freedom – beautiful freedom!

Some years back the idea of a woman driving a scooter would certainly not ‘look good’ for whatever reasons. I remember having a discussion with a guy quite some years back my pen-name Sakooter itself. The guy found it funny that I supported hijab and talked of scooter. To me it was weird that people actually have a problem with something as simple as a means of conveyance which saves women a lot of trouble.  There would be some who would even go to the extent of calling it un-Islamic. (Am I raising eye-brows somewhere?) Don’t open your mouth yet.. wait up… didn’t the women in Arabia travel on a camel? Do you see a co-relation? Continue reading

Childhood

Close your eyes and think of yourself as a child. Think of what used to amuse you and what made you happy.

The little pleasures of life.

As I do that, I think of our garden and me sitting in the porch looking at the little in our garden tree with yellow flowers all over it. Yes its spring and the grass is turning green. Everything looks fresh. And a yellow flower in my hand.

And the day is ending, darkness hiding the bright day light. Its time to go inside.

Save Dal Lake!

Moved to: http://sakooterspeaks.com/kashmir/save-dal-lake/190/

More Snow Pics

Sheen hasa pyov! – untimely snow…

Yesterday morning was bright and sunny… someone commented its so sunny.. and yes.. i agreed…
and then as if from nowhere, the clouds descended and a few raindrops… enough to set the environment for a sleepy Sunday… and then it rained and rained and rained….

This morning when I looked outside the I saw the white glow… it had snowed!

I just stared…. not now???
Just as much as snow at its proper time would have caused smiles, I just looked and wondered… wasn’t it just a few days back when I expressed joy at the coming of spring… It was just a few days back when I was running around taking pictures of the beautiful yembarzals as they spread fragrance in the air.. I had seen a few butterflies flutter around.. and i sang to myself.. Spring is in the air

and that too after a winter which I had spent waiting for snow

and now Snow?

I said, this is the height… we have sun shining upon us in the middle of Chilay Kalaan and now snow after the initial bloom of spring?

and someone replied… “Nat kyazi wanhous Khoda?”

Truly, Allah doesnt work on our whims and fancies…
Is it just another expression of the beauty and freedom that nature enjoys?

or is it a warning… a threat…

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Here are some of the photographs I took this morning… its snow in spring..
winter having a tug-of-power with spring…

Hum Kya Chahtay — Azadi!

The slogan that has fuelled the Kashmiri struggle for ‘freedom’ – continues to elude us even after years of bloodshed, agony and pain. We – ‘hum’ refers to all who happen to live in Kashmir and cry out for… ‘Azadi’ – Freedom.

As ironical as it sounds each person who lives in Kashmir or identifies himself to this concept of Azadi continues to live on thinking that we want Azadi not knowing what exactly this means to them as a nation, as a people.

This need for freedom goes from individual level to the level of a nation – and at each level taking different meanings – remaining elusive, abstract, and unattainable.

As a nation, politically speaking – Kashmir wants freedom from Indian occupation. The reason is an amalgam of many reasons that not necessarily all the Kashmiris would agree upon. The reason ranges from the facts that are burried in the historical documents and events, to nationalistic reasons of seperation on basis of language, skin colour and a distinct culture, moving to immense hatred for India and its policies, to reasons which seem to be having a semblance to ‘need of a separate state based on ideology and religion.’ In reality nobody is quite sure of the reason(s).

The only thing we are sure of as a nation is that we have clung fast to this slogan from its very inception and have used it as a binding force, as a fuel to the so called freedom struggle. Today it loses much of its meaning, it loses the fervour it used to cause, it loses all the passion and emotion that it used to generate. The slogan is lost, just as the hope to achieve freedom is lost somewhere.

There have been politically master planned attempts to have people Kashmiris get rid of this slogan and take another… for e.g. I remember Mehbooba Mufti’s attempt to change to slogan to “Hum kya chahtay – shanti” (shanti for peace), and more recently I saw photographs of a “jaloos” with a placard with “Hum kya chahtay – insaaf” (insaaf for justice). Ironically, none of these is going to stay as an identity to the Kashmiri struggle. … and paradoxically, there cant be any semblance of peace and justice without freedom.

And freedom not just at the political front, but freedom of the nation — politically, economically, socially, religiously – and the freedom at the national level trickling down to the individual level.

Freedom from poverty, freedom from fear of going out of home after 6.00 p.m., freedom from the lies, freedom of expression, freedom from helplessness, freedom from that lump that rises in the throat and sends down tears…freedom to live life…

Truly we need freedom…
… for we are trapped
Trapped in our own desires…
…. unfulfilled, unaccounted for
Taunted by the fences…
… our freedom waits with
Tears in its eyes…
… for the hope
That is lost…

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