When something hurts me real bad, when my emotional wall is broken, when I am provoked, I choose to write . Putting my thoughts into words always gives vent to my feelings. So here, I write without being an extremist and without generalising people and their behaviour. It happened to me this day in a local market of our very own capital city.
I was buying some books along with my friend when due to the weight of the books the bag tore and I went to a random shopkeeper to ask for a bag and to my utter surprise, he replied “Waise toh aap log Kashmiri hain toh nahi dena chahiye, lekin fir bhi de rahe hai toh le lijiye”. (Although you are a Kashmiri, I shouldn’t give it to you but still I am so take it.) I must say that for a second I didn’t understand what he meant , but while replying “Kya matlab Uncle” (What do you mean, uncle? )to him with a smile on my face, I noted his expression and understood what he was trying to say. I mean, are we aliens? Why do you treat us like this? Do we not have feelings? Please understand that it hurts. We suffer. Yes, we do. I and my friend were looking at each other with a heartbroken look . She, enraged, told me to throw that bag on his face but I didn’t. Not that I didn’t have the courage to do so but doing so was against my upbringing. Doing so was incorrect. Doing so would have proved me to be an illiterate fool. I chose to take the bag not because I was in need of it but because he was in need of something which could open his eyes. The irony of the situation is that he was a bookseller. What can be more saddening than someone who spends his day with the books and then makes such an ignorant comment? It broke my heart into pieces and I left the place.
Now, there is a possibility that inspite of selling books , he must have been an illiterate person but to my knowledge when you are selling books you must respect the idea of this profession even if you know nothing about the profession.There’s no point of selling books if you make such ignorant comments.
I complete this article with a message -“We hate no one, we are humans in the same way you are. This incident is nothing , I repeat nothing in comparison to what we have suffered for so long now and are still suffering.
We want peace :)”.
– Sheikh Bazilah
B.A Eng. Hons., Jamia Millia Islamia