Srinagar: Local Muslims in Jammu and Kashmir’s Bandipora district on Thursday performed the last rites of a Kashmiri Pandit woman, upholding the centuries old tradition of brotherhood between the two communities.
Rani Bhat (75), wife of Moti Lal Bhat, died in Kaloosa village in Bandipora district on Wednesday and her last rites were performed on Thursday.
Ignoring all fears of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, dozens of Muslim neighbours went to Bhat family’s residence and joined the mourning in the true tradition of Hindu-Muslim brotherhood for which Kashmir has been known for centuries.
Muslim women were seen in tears when they came to condole the death of the Pandit women.
The Muslim neighbours then joined hands to carry out all the formalities for the deceased woman’s last rites, in line with the cremation practices of Kashmiri Pandits.
From setting up the cremation pyre to the last minute details of carrying the earthen pot to the cremation ground, local Muslims did them besides carrying the body for the final journey.
Once again, the residents of Kaloosa village proved that despite the distances created between the two communities by terrorism and religious fanaticism, Kashmir’s core of eclectic, secular, pluralistic culture remains intact.
The Bhat family of Kaloosa village did not migrate out of the Valley even as thousands of other Kashmiri Pandits had to abandon their home and hearth after armed violence started here in early 1990s.