Posts Tagged ‘Jammu & Kashmir


The Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mr. Omar Abdullah is a passionate cricket lover these days. He’s following the national side’s selection process quite closely nowadays. Today he went one step further. He aired his opinion on Twitter as to who should be picked up and dropped from the playing eleven.

Needless to say this unsolicited advice has obviously not gone down well with many cricket fans and he has drawn a lot of flak. The question is why is cricket Mr. Omar Abdullah’s new found love? Why this sudden interest in cricket and the functioning of national side?

Well, the answer is for the ongoing India-Zimbabwe series, the national selectors have picked a promising cricketer Parvez Rasool who hails from Jammu & Kashmir. And as it turns out, Mr. Omar Abdullah is very keen on Parvez Rasool making his debut in the ongoing series against Zimbabwe.

Though Parvez Rasool is with the Indian cricket team right now, he’s yet to get a game. He’s warming the benches. And according to Mr. Omar Abdullah, this could be demoralising for Parvez Rasool. He blamed BCCI for this on his Twitter page. He went on to say that if BCCI wanted to do this, why did it send Parvez Rasool all the way to Zimbabwe. It could have demoralised him here in India.

Nobody knows whether BCCI wants to demoralise Parvez Rasool or make him a cricketing hero. Why Mr. Omar Abdullah is taking a dig at BCCI is confusing all cricket lovers who had never expected a CM to speak on behalf of a player from his state selected to play for the country. This is as strange as it can get.

This pressure tactic from Mr. Omar Abdullah has left genuine cricket lovers fuming and frothing at their mouths. This happens in cricket. Many cricketers get selected for a particular series or tournament. But they don’t get chance to play and make their debut in that series or tournament because the captain and the coach don’t want to tinker with the winning combination.

But it doesn’t mean that they are always denied a chance. Later on, when they do get a chance, they make the most of it. As a result, they end up becoming an integral part of the national side and go on to play for the country for years together.

What’s the big deal?

What’s the fuss all about?

What prompted Mr. Omar Abdullah to jump the gun and slam BCCI? Should politics and sports be mixed? The national selectors have found Parvez Rasool to be a talented player. This is why they’ve selected him. Let’s assume that he doesn’t get a game in the ongoing series. After returning, he continues to perform at domestic level. Selectors will certainly give him another chance.

When the national captain and the coach place their trust in Parvez Rasool, he will make the most of it and leave no stones unturned to create a lasting impression. But unfortunately, CM Mr. Omar Abdullah’s over-enthusiasm has created an unnecessary controversy and opened a whole new debate.

Why should politicians interfere in the affairs of Cricket? Selectors pick up a formidable national side and hand it over to the captain and the coach. If the politicians start putting pressure on the captain to include players from their respective states in the playing eleven, nothing can be more damaging for the spirit of the game.

What’s even more surprising is Mr. Omar Abdullah is worried that this warming the bench would demoralise Parvez Rasool. But he is not bothered what kind of demoralisation his tweet would cause to the captain, his team members and BCCI.

Will BCCI ignore this diatribe and nurture Parvez Rasool’s talent for future? Or has Mr. Omar Abdullah’s ill-fated tweet ended the career of a promising player like Parvez Rasool even before it kicked off? Only time will tell.


“Our Moon Has Blood Clots – The Exodus of the Kashmiri Pandits” by Rahul Pandita

Published By Random House India

Rs 499/- Pages  258,  Genre Non-fiction

When the reader finishes reading a book, he emerges from the experience either entertained or more knowledgeable. Very few books have it in them to leave their reader completely speechless and moved to tears for hours on end. Rahul Pandita’s “Our Moon Has Blood Clots” is one such book.

This work of non-fiction is a masterpiece as far as the telling of the controversial exodus of the Kashmiri Pandits from their homes way back in 1989-90 is concerned. Unfortunately, Rahul Pandita belongs to a generation of the Kashmiri Pandits that both experienced and witnessed the exodus.

The  book tells one of the most tragic tales of the modern times. The issue of the exodus of the Kashmiri Pandits is laid bare in bone-chilling and mind numbing details. This brutal and most inhuman saga reads like a thriller. Rahul Pandita is successful in keeping the reader turning the pages with the honest account of those turbulent days in the history of the valley.

The book is divided in five parts. In the beginning, the narrator traces the origins of the Kashmiri Pandits and how  misfortunes after misfortunes have befallen upon them at amazing regularities since good olden days.

Soon the narrative shifts to the events of 1989-90 that led to the exodus leaving the Pandits as refugees in their own country. The conspiracy to uproot and scare them into exile is so well-orchestrated and perfectly executed that at the plight of these harried souls often falling to the bullets even the most cruel heart melts like the wax from the burnt-out candle.

The hardships and the betrayals they face at the refugee camps or at the hands of the hostile landlords leave the reader with only one prayer that the almighty must never put even enemies through such tragic and unfortunate conditions.

The events of 1947 when the most horrific tribal raids took place are gory enough to give any reader sleepless nights. How brave Kashmiri Pandits choose to fall to the enemy bullets rather than compromise their dignity and surrender honour. The account of those incidents is so vivid that the tears do not, even once, dry up while going through them.

The fourth and fifth parts deal with how the narrator tries to come to terms with the catastrophe of his homelessness, his special and priceless bond with his elder brother Ravi and his mother’s failing health. As the narrative unfolds at the lightning speed, the reader’s admiration and respect for the lion-hearted narrator only grows.

Who can come to terms with the trauma of his childhood home inhabited by unknown people? What can the visit to such a home abandoned in the most hostile conditions bring forth? The account of this visit is so emotionally charged that the heart goes out to the narrator immediately.

What makes “Our Moon Has Blood Clots” extremely readable is its lucid prose. It is so free flowing with attention paid to every minute detail that the reader feels as if the entire saga is unfolding right before his eyes. The tension keeps building to the last page. The end leaves the reader heart-broken and  thoughtful beyond one’s imagination.

To sum up, these lines from the book come to mind, “When I saw Nehru for the first time in Lal Chowk, I was a refugee in my own state sixty years later, I am a refugee in my own country”. They pierce like an arrow and set us thinking what kind of apology to the Kashmiri Pandits will make them feel good.

“Our Moon Has Blood Clots” is a must read for all those who want to know the first hand authentic account of the exodus that took place twenty three years ago. The readers with weak hearts will want to think twice before plunging themselves in to the beautifully evocative and emotionally charged “Our Moon Has Blood Clots – The Exodus of the Kashmiri Pandits”.

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