Pic By Shah Jehangir

Pellet Victims ask ‘fake associations’ to stop collecting money on their name

Neyaz Elahi

Srinagar: Kashmir pellet victims Monday staged a peaceful protest here in Srinagar asking ‘fake pellet unions’ to stop collecting money on their name.

Scores of pellet victims, mostly blind by one eye assembled at Press Enclave Srinagar. They were carrying placards seeking justice and assistance from common people of Kashmir.

The victims assembly under the banner of newly floated ‘Jammu Kashmir Pellet Victims Welfare Trust’ (JKPVWT).

“We were forced to form this new association as some people and NGO’s floated fake pellet associations on their name and even pleaded the cases of their own victims before Government and helped them to get the jobs. There are about 1250 pellet victims who have lost sight while only 12 of them have been given government jobs,” President JKPVWT, Muhammad Ashraf Wani told reporters.

Wani, a resident of Rohmu Pulwama who is blind by right eye and has received 365 pellets and a bullet appealed common people to come forward and help their Union financially. “We are finished. We have lost everything and our families have suffered heavily. Even our sisters and mothers sold their jewellery for our medication,” he said and added that there are over 1250 pellet victims who have either lost whole sight or are blind by one eye.

The victims who were part of the protest narrated their ordeal. One of the pellet victims Sameer Ahmed of Hasanpora Bijbehara said that during evening hours he turns complete blind while during day time, something becomes visible to him. “On July 8 last year, Government Forces pumped 35 pellets into my body when i was coming out from the Jamia Masjid.

Another youth Bilal Ahmed from Khawaja Gilgat Sopore has also become blind by both eyes. “I lost my sight on July 13, 2016 when Forces rained pellets on protesters protesting against the killing of Burhan Wani,” he said.

A 16 year old girl Shabroza from Rohmu Pulwama was also the part of protest. “I lost my left eye when on 31 October 2016, Forces barged into our house when protests were going outside. I was sitting in my lawn when pellets hit my eyes,” she said.

Tral Times Bureau

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