Nadimarg ghosts continues to haunt Kashmiri Pandits
4 October 2003
The Hindustan Times
Srinagar: WITH PAINFUL memories of Nadimarg massacre still fresh, Kashmiri Pandits from across the Valley converged on the Ragunathji temple in the heart of Srinagar yesterday. The occasion was Mahanavmi puja, which actually was to be performed on Ramnavmi, around six months back but was put off due to the massacre of 24 Pandits a few days before the event. And, though being the first major occasion of reunion after the incident, lesser number of devotees turned up for puja this year. While the Hindu Welfare Society blames the indifferent attitude of the state and Central governments for the low turnout this year, devotees said the Nadimarg massacre was definitely what deterred many from attending the puja. “The carnage had shaken the psyche of Pandits who had braved all odds and decided not to migrate in early 90s,” opined a young devotee who attended the puja. Many Pandits are still scared of coming out of their villages, he said. The Hindu Welfare Society president Moti Lal Bhat, however, said the government did not provide basic facilities such as drinking water even though it was the first major Hindu festival after the Nadimarg carnage. How can the government expect migrants to return if it cannot even make basic arrangements in festival time? he asked.