Couple with 3 blind children lives atop a cowshed after 2014 gun-battle destroyed their home

During the gunfight, a bullet hit Begum’s old mother-in-law, leaving her paralysed and now stuck in the cowshed along with the three blind boys.

Muzamil Shah
Kupwara, Publish Date: Nov 9 2018 1:07AM | Updated Date: Nov 9 2018 3:24PM
Couple with 3 blind children lives atop a cowshed after 2014 gun-battle destroyed their homeGK Photo

Their three blind children had learned to move around the single-storey house Rafeeqa Begum and her husband had built for them with a lot of hardship, but now the family is stuck atop a cowshed since 2014 when their home was completely destroyed during a gun-battle.

During the gunfight, a bullet hit Begum’s old mother-in-law, leaving her paralysed and now stuck in the cowshed along with the three blind boys.

Begum wipes the tears of her husband, Muhammad Sadiq, with her scarf as the couple sat inside a dark room beside the paralysed old woman and the blind children.

The entire family was shattered on 8 April 2014 when soldiers killed two armed militants in their home that was completely destroyed during the gun-battle in Zunreshi area of Kupwara district.

Life for them has been a nightmare since.

“We had no place to live in so we turned the upper part of our cowshed into a living room,” Begum said.

Her husband Sadiq had taken years working as daily-wage labourer to put together money and construct a home where his three blind children, now aged 16, 9 and 6 years, could live easily.

“They had started recognising that house with the help of their senses and used to move from one room to another without anyone’s help, but here (room above their cowshed) all the three have had narrow escapes when they came out on the stairs looking for me or Sadiq for the last four years,” says Begum.

Sadiq says the government paid them no compensation for their house destroyed during the encounter in which they had no role.

“I am an illiterate person. I don’t know what the procedures and rules are. I have come to know from several acquaintances that government provides compensation to the people whose houses get damaged in encounters, and to be honest I have not received a single penny,” he said, adding that no one even visited to assess the loss.

But this was not the first time conditions in Kashmir displaced Sadiq.

“I was a kid when we were forced to migrate from main Chowkibal to Zunreshi after army established a camp on our entire village,” he says.

“I get 700 rupees per month as rent from them (army) for that piece of land.”

Sadiq is desperate to rebuild a proper home for their children, but he cannot move far from his children for work and better wages.

“I consider myself as one of the unluckiest persons on earth because I cannot even move to the city to support my children and an ailing mother,” Sadiq said. “Every time I decide to shift to Srinagar or another place I wonder what will happen to the family in my absence.”

The then Member of Legislative Assembly Saifullah Mir, Sadiq says, agreed to give Rs 20,000/- each to his three children “as compensation” when the couple knocked at his door.

“We have not received that amount yet because it was never released,” says Begum, pointing towards the documents related to the compensation hanging from the wall of the cowshed. “I have no one except Allah to ask for help, but if someone wants they can help three blind children and their grandmother paralysed by a bullet.”

Latest News

  1. Ready to join third front if it takes shape in Jammu and Kashmir, says Muzaffar Baig
  2. Ready to join third front if it takes shape in Jammu and Kashmir, says Muzaffar Baig
  1. Trump criticises Navy SEAL for not capturing Osama bin Laden sooner
  2. Trump criticises Navy SEAL for not capturing Osama bin Laden sooner
  1. Ladakh MP cites 'false' promises, unwise decisions for quitting BJP
  2. Ladakh MP cites 'false' promises, unwise decisions for quitting BJP
  1. Dicka's 70th minute strike hands Bagan 1-0 win over Real Kashmir
  2. Dicka's 70th minute strike hands Bagan 1-0 win over Real Kashmir
  1. JKSSB cancels 71 selections, asks candidates in waiting list to approach concerned departments
  2. JKSSB cancels 71 selections, asks candidates in waiting list to approach concerned departments
  1. Panchayat polls: Kupwara records highest voter turnout in Kashmir
  2. Panchayat polls: Kupwara records highest voter turnout in Kashmir
  1. JRL calls shutdown on November 22 against killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader
  2. JRL calls shutdown on November 22 against killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader
  1. Cop, who allegedly attempted suicide at DGP office, succumbs to injuries
  2. Cop, who allegedly attempted suicide at DGP office, succumbs to injuries
  1. DSEK invites applications from under privileged students to avail 10 percent quota in coaching centres
  2. DSEK invites applications from under privileged students to avail 10 percent quota in coaching centres
  1. Delhi CM attacked with chilli powder in secretariat: Officials
  2. Delhi CM attacked with chilli powder in secretariat: Officials
  1. Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader’s killing part of conspiracy to suppress genuine Kashmir voices: Jama’at
  2. Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader’s killing part of conspiracy to suppress genuine Kashmir voices: Jama’at
  1. Two army soldiers wounded in cross-LoC fire in Pir Panjal
  2. Two army soldiers wounded in cross-LoC fire in Pir Panjal
  1. Deeply saddened by killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader in south Kashmir, says Mirwaiz
  2. Deeply saddened by killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader in south Kashmir, says Mirwaiz
  1. Panchayat polls: 57 per cent voter turnout recorded in Bandipora till noon
  2. Panchayat polls: 57 per cent voter turnout recorded in Bandipora till noon
  1. Judge halts Trump's asylum ban
  2. Judge halts Trump's asylum ban
  1. Would be good for Musharraf to return to Pak to face trial: Court
  2. Would be good for Musharraf to return to Pak to face trial: Court
  1. SC adjourns CBI hearing post 'leak' of Verma's response
  2. SC adjourns CBI hearing post 'leak' of Verma's response
  1. Vaishno Devi pilgrim from Maharashtra dies in Katra
  2. Vaishno Devi pilgrim from Maharashtra dies in Katra
  1. Salahuddin condemns killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader, calls it ‘handiwork of Indian agencies’
  2. Salahuddin condemns killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat leader, calls it ‘handiwork of Indian agencies’
  1. Militants killed in Shopian gunfight identified
  2. Militants killed in Shopian gunfight identified
  1. Panchayat polls: Less than one per cent polling recorded in Anantnag till 10 AM
  2. Panchayat polls: Less than one per cent polling recorded in Anantnag till 10 AM
  1. Pakistan, IMF facing differences over bailout programme
  2. Pakistan, IMF facing differences over bailout programme
  1. Tehreek-e-Hurriyat district president Anantnag Hafizullah Mir shot dead
  2. Tehreek-e-Hurriyat district president Anantnag Hafizullah Mir shot dead
  1. Four militants, army commando killed in Shopian gunfight; Internet suspended
  2. Four militants, army commando killed in Shopian gunfight; Internet suspended
  1. Amritsar attack: Punjab Police detain 'hardliners' for questioning
  2. Amritsar attack: Punjab Police detain 'hardliners' for questioning
  1. Militant killings trigger violent protests in Shopian, Pulwama towns
  2. Militant killings trigger violent protests in Shopian, Pulwama towns
  1. Six killed, 10 injured in explosion near ordnance depot in Maharashtra
  2. Six killed, 10 injured in explosion near ordnance depot in Maharashtra
  1. Three girls among four civilians injured in Shopian clashes, referred to Srinagar
  2. Three girls among four civilians injured in Shopian clashes, referred to Srinagar
  1. 2nd phase of Panchayat polls begins in Jammu and Kashmir
  2. 2nd phase of Panchayat polls begins in Jammu and Kashmir
  1. Abducted Shopian youth shot in leg, set free
  2. Abducted Shopian youth shot in leg, set free
  1. Jammu and Kashmir border clash: Mortar shells land near Poonch brigade headquarters
  2. Jammu and Kashmir border clash: Mortar shells land near Poonch brigade headquarters
  1. Multiple people reported shot near hospital in Chicago
  2. Multiple people reported shot near hospital in Chicago
  1. Three army soldiers wounded as gunfight breaks out in south Kashmir's Shopian
  2. Three army soldiers wounded as gunfight breaks out in south Kashmir's Shopian
x
This site uses cookies to deliver our services and to show you relevant news and ads. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Service.That's Fine