Spreading the message of unity in times of tension in Kashmir Valley, hundreds of people, mostly Muslims, got together in the last rites of Hindu Rajput who was shot dead by suspected militants in south Kashmir’s Kulgam on Wednesday evening.
The Muslims of Kakran and adjacent villages of South Kashmir’s Kulgam helped perform the last rites of Satesh Kumar Singh, as per Hindu rituals who was shot dead by militants last evening. The slain Rajput is survived by his wife and three young daughters.
Eyewitnesses said that as the body of Satesh reached his native place people in hordes came out to mourn the killing.
“People were shocked. Everyone mourned his death as women were wailing when the body reached the village,” they said, adding that hundreds of people take part in his last rites.
From helping in making shroud for the slain, Muslims shouldered his coffin and arranged wood for the cremation in the village..
“Majority of people present in the last rituals were Muslims. We performed his last rites. We condemn incidents which try to create differences between Hindus and Muslims. We live here in peace and harmony,” Muhammad Yousuf, Satesh’s neighbour, said.
“He was the son of the soil and we are in shock and grief over his killing. Even if a militant is killed, we mourn. After all, it is a human being who loses his life and his family has to bear the brunt for whole life,” he said.
Wednesday’s killing comes nine days after suspected militants shot at and injured a Kashmiri Pandit in Shopian. Over the past three weeks, five other attacks were carried out targeting migrant workers in Pulwama, injuring seven of them, three from Punjab, three from Bihar and one from UP.
Kulgam and Shopian districts have small pockets with Rajput families who have not migrated out of Jammu and Kashmir. (KNO)