Family members of slain J&K constables share memories

Abdul Majeed GanaieSRINAGAR: Eighteen-month-old Uzma searches for her father, Constable Abdul Majeed Ganaie, among the mourners who continue to stream into their home in Ganderbal. To calm her down, a family member plays a video clip of Majeed crooning a Bollywood number.

The video solaces Uzma, who looks confused by the sudden arrival of teary eyed people trying to console her mother and other family members.

Majeed gave the performance at a family function. His voice had left all of us stunned, recalls his brother Showkat, a labourer, as he receives mourners at his residence.

The song “Tere Jaisa Yaar Kahan” by Kishore Kumar was his favourite and he would sing it quite often, he says. “Friendship was the only thing he had earned all these years,” Showkat says, as he puts the song on a loop for his niece Uzma, who wants to see her ‘Baba’.

Showkat chokes back tears as he recalls his last meeting with Majeed 15 days ago when he had come home for a break. “Majeed would advise me not to fight as I am a bit short-tempered,” he says.

Born at Shallabugh Ganderbal in central Kashmir, Majeed had only studied till Class 8 and had subsequently started working as a labourer.

In 1995, he joined the banned Hizbul Mujahideen as a locally trained militant, but he returned to the mainstream a year later. Thereafter, he started working as a labourer till 2000 when he got selected as a constable.

The four policemen were on guard duty outside a minority pocket – a term used for localities where Kashmiri Pandits stay – when militants attacked them.

The pregnant wife of Anees ul Islam Mir, one of the slain constables, is in trauma since she’s heard the news about her husband’s death.

“They had got married seven months ago and she was expecting. Both of them were really excited about it. Anees was just 26 years old,” his maternal uncle Sabzar Bhat says.

Mourners continue to throng their residence in Kulgam village of South Kashmir since Wednesday morning and his wife has fainted many times.

Bhat, who runs a chemist shop, has kept a doctor on standby for her.

Constable Mehrajuddin Dar’s family was preparing for his wedding next year. He had started constructing a house for himself in Khewa of Safapora in Bandipore district of North Kashmir.

“He was a darling of his nieces and nephews. He would spend time with children during holidays,” recalls his brother Farooq Dar.

Constbale Hamidullah Ganie stayed with his brother Abdul Majeed Ganie after his marriage with Khalida. His family stays in Fatehpora of Anantnag in South Kashmir. PTI

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