SRINAGAR – Photograph of a three-year-old boy sitting on the blood stained body of his grandfather lying on the road in the restive town of Sopore of the Kashmir Valley has gone viral on social media. The heart-wrenching visual has evoked a deep sense of shock and dismay in general public on the social media.
Bashir Ahmad Qasid (Khan), a construction contractor of Srinagar city, was killed allegedly in a cross-fire between suspected militants and paramilitary troopers in Sopore, 50 km north of Srinagar on Wednesday. He had left home at 6 am along with his three-year-old grandson, Ayaad, his family told media persons.
A local news agency reported that five people including four CRPF personnel and a civilian were injured in the incident. However, when the injured were rushed to the hospital, the doctors declared the CRPF personnel and a civilian dead.
A video that surfaced on social media shortly after the incident shows the child sobbing inside a police van and asking in broken Kashmiri that he wants to go home. The policemen try to comfort the child by giving him chocolates and biscuit packs.
Heart wrenching video of a kid after he lost his grandfather in a militant attack on the paramilitary forces in #Sopore. police party reached the spot & rescued this three-year-old boy. One CRPF trooper and a civilian were killed in the attack. pic.twitter.com/YZWBNBLstL
— Danish Nisar دانش نثار (@JournoDanish) July 1, 2020
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah took to twitter to react to the incident that has triggered massive public uproar. He criticised the police for the filming, uploading and sharing the visuals as he called it a “propaganda” aimed at sending a “we good, they bad” message”.
We would have expected no less from the men in uniform than to rescue the young boy & for that they have our gratitude but we would expect better than for them to film & use a three year old’s pain the way it’s being done today.
— Omar Abdullah (@OmarAbdullah) July 1, 2020
He wrote, “we would expect better than for them (police) to film & use a three year old’s pain the way it’s being done today.”
Do you not have an iota of empathy left in you?? https://t.co/PJYT4uZZbj
— Dia Mirza (@deespeak) July 1, 2020
Some reports that appeared in Indian media outlets suggested that he was killed by militants. However, the family blamed the CRPF for his death. They said he was brought down from the vehicle and then shot dead. A male family member was seen in a viral video alleging that it was the CRPF which killed him. “When firing started, the CRPF retaliated and killed him,” he says.
— Ashraf Wani اشرف وانی (@ashraf_wani) July 1, 2020
“He was brought down from the vehicle and then shot him dead,” another video viral on social media shows the daughter of the slain wailing. “This is cruelty. They have snatched my father from me.”
— Asian News Hub (@AsianNewsHub) July 1, 2020