A tragic tale, from the tragic village of Kunan

A tragic tale, from the tragic village of Kunan

One year has passed; Basit Khan’s family still awaits justice 

Abrar A. Mattoo

KUPWARA, April 6: In the tragic village of Kunan, Kupwara, Hafeeza Begum, a fifty-year-old woman is responsible for feeding her four daughters, an eleven-year-old son, and her eighty-year-old father. She runs the house on the thrifty sum of Rs. 7500; money that she receives under the spouse pension scheme from the government. 

Ten years ago, her husband died from a heart attack, and only a year ago, her son, Ghulam Mohi-Ud-Din Khan, alias, Basit Khan was lynched by the miscreants in Jaipur, Rajasthan.  

“Basit felt that his father’s pension was not enough, therefore he wanted to help the family. Though he went to work in Jaipur breathing, he came back dead!” Hafeeza told Kashmir Despatch while suppressing her cold sighs. However, she could not control the tears rolling on her face. 

Basit Khan, 20, had left the valley for work, following the clampdown after the revocation of Art. 370. On 6 February, 2020, after a verbal brawl broke out, Basit Khan was beaten ruthlessly by the miscreants on the streets of Jaipur. He died in Coma the next day at Man Singh hospital. Medical negligence and blood clots in his head developed from the beating were the reason that killed him. According to his mother, for 24 hours, unaware of the fact that Mr. Basit has suffered multiple concussions in his head, the staff at Man Singh hospital had been treating him for food poisoning. 

“Thus far, no justice has been given, because if the court had started a trial on the sole accused in the case, we’d have received a summon to appear in the court, but that has not happened thus far. Firstly, the police failed to nab the other accused in the case, and now they have most probably freed the main accused too,” Hafeeza informed this correspondent.

“We appeal the government to take up Basit Khan’s case, as the assumption is clear that the murders have been freed,” demanded Basit Khan’s eighty-year-old grandfather.  

Hafeeza is unable to travel to Rajasthan to follow her son’s case in court. Neither her domestic engagement allows her to do so, nor can she afford it. Additionally, she is not literate, therefore, a versed person has to accompany her, which is both hectic and costly.

“I have not traveled to Jaipur until now, because who’d take care of my family without me,” Hafeeza further informed Kashmir Despatch. 

Now she is looking for some sort of job because Rs. 7500 is not sufficient to meet the expenses of her eleven-year-old son Asif who is in 2nd standard; her eighty-year-old father Hakeem Mohammad, her four daughters, Rafia (10th), Kulsuma (8th), Sabreena (5th), Tahira (12th), and her own self.          

“While the only breadwinner for the family of seven, Basit Khan lies in the grave, his family has fallen on the hard times without him. The local government has neither helped them get justice nor provided any monetary help to the family. It’s simply insensitive of the government,” Mr. Shafa’at Syed, a local youth from the village told Kashmir Despatch.  

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