Rendered blind, she now asks parents, is it day or night?
Insha Mushtaq (14), is spending all her time in a room at her Shopian residence. She has not seen any light, colours, moon and sun from July 11, 2016, the day when forces targeted her
with pellets and rendered blind. She sometimes lies on a bed and sometimes want to spent time by touching books. As she hears voices around her, she tries to recognize the person.
Her family members help her to know who has arrived. She often asks the parents, is it day or night? Her father Mushtaq envelopes her hand. He leans down to whisper in her ear, soothing her.
She has been blinded. She was treated first in Srinagar, then shifted to Delhi and later to Mumbai. She has undergone several surgeries and lost all hopes to regain eye sight. Nothing could be done to save her eyes. The pellets destroyed her vision. She is just 14 years old.
Insha also lost three teeth due to the pellets but the damage to eyesight overshadowed tooth injuries in media reports. The class 9 student is feeling scared after hearing the word “pellet guns.” She has lost her eyesight to it. To talk about putting end to the use of pellets would not make any difference to the victim as it would not recover her eyesight.
“Discussions are taking place whether to ban or not to ban the use of pellets. The fact is either move will not help me to regain my eyesight,” she says. Unaware about her future and surroundings, Insha says that “I aspired to become a doctor or Engineer. I see my present and future bleak now. I have lost all my hopes and can’t even dream about my future. What only my dream is now to see my parents again who are trying hard to regain my eyesight.” Besides, I want to study and recite Quran again, she says.
Insha who is diehard fan of Motu Patlu (Cartoon programme) says, “My father was receiving calls from Dr Tariq who is London, regarding my treatment in America. I completed all the formalities including passport and other things regarding my appointment for treatment in America However, Dr Tariq who was calling from internet numbers is not calling anymore.” Insha while briefing about the incident that took place on July 11 evening said, “I was studying in my kitchen. However, clashes were ongoing in the area at that time. As soon as I stood up to look outside from the window, some force personnel fired pellets on me, thereafter I don’t know anything what happened with me.” Demanding strict action against the culprits involved in blinding her and maiming and killing other civilians in Kashmir, Insha says, “Whosoever will be involved in maiming, blinding and killing civilians should be deal with strictly,” she demanded.
While asking about her studies, Insha says, “Science and Mathematics were my favourite subjects. I was good in these subjects as well. I was attaining almost full percentage in these subjects.” She suddenly having a bit smile on her face and says what only she dislike among her subjects was Urdu. Insha says, “If exams will be conducted, I have to go through audio lectures to prepare myself to appear in exams. At the time of exams, I will dictate answers to any person (helper) who will be writing my papers.” “Other than studies, I love to play Kho-Kho, Stapu, Badminton and watching programmes like Motu Patlu, Tarak Mehta ka Ulta Chashma. Besides it, I love to eat chocolates as well,” said says.
When asked about her daily life before sustaining injuries, Insha said, “I was well in cooking and was helping my mother on Sundays or on holidays. Mostly I loved to cook Chickens.” “I had not any friends. But since I sustained injuries, I made several friends but all of those are elder than me. Rabia, professionally a professor is my best friend. She is from Srinagar and is presently working outside the state. She usually calls me and talks to me over phone for long times.” She said that she first visited her in the hospital and later became her friend. Insha said that besides Rabia, several students studying outside the state also inquired about her health in the hospital in Delhi and Mumbai while some among them are still calling her and are inquiring about her health.