Muslims Help Perform Last Rites of 110-year-old Kashmiri Pandit

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Muslims of south Kashmir’s Shopian district set an example by helping in performing the last rites of a 110-year-old Kashmiri Pandit on Thursday. — Representational image

The Muslim neighbours not only consoled the grief-stricken family but also helped in fetching wooden logs for cremation

Clarion India

NEW DELHI – In times of communal hate-mongering, Muslims of south Kashmir’s Shopian district set an example by helping in performing the last rites of a 110-year-old Kashmiri Pandit on Thursday, reported The Tribune.

Amid Covid-19 pandemic, as word spread about the demise of Pandit Kanth Ram, Muslims of the area rushed to his house. They not only consoled the grief-stricken family but also helped in fetching wooden logs to cremate the body.

More than 30 years ago, Pandit Kanth Ram had chosen to stay back in the Valley after the eruption of militancy. The lone family has been living there ever since.

Giving an account of the fraternal behaviour with the family, Abdul Gaffar, a resident of Zainapora in Shopian, said, “We were one and shared a great camaraderie. Our families used to visit each other, eat together and we always remained together in happiness and sorrow. We lost a friend, a well-wisher and a noble soul and the entire area is saddened by his death”.

The Pandit is survived by son Ramesh Kumar, who runs a medical shop in the area. President of Hindu Welfare Society Kashmir Chunni Lal Bhat said the lone Pandit family shared a great rapport with the Muslims of the area.

“Pandit Kanth Ram was an elderly gentleman, who did not migrate out of Kashmir when militancy erupted. He always had good relations with the Muslims of the area. Since his son runs a medical shop, everybody knows him,” Bhat further added.

Muslims had lent a helping hand to the non-migrant Kashmiri Pandits even during the thick and thin in the past, too, he said.

Hoping for the return of the Kashmiri Pandits who left the Valley three decades ago, Bhat gives an account of the communal harmony in the area. “There are many villages where just one or two Pandit families live. Though religious rites are performed by us only, Muslims, too, lend a helping hand by fetching wood, etc. They also help us during weddings”, he added.

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