Enforced disappearances in Kashmir: No law, no relief for families

Aap khana bana kar rakho, main sabzi le aaunga Lal Chowk se,’ are surely not the last words one would want to hear from their loved ones before them disappearing into thin air.

Shakeela reminisces the 1992 Lal Chowk crack-down, when Bashir Ahmed Sheikh, her father-in-law and a painter by profession went to Lal Chowk to buy some paint and vegetables but unfortunately couldn’t have that last meal.

Bashir was the sole breadwinner for his family- a wife and three sons. After the disappearance, the condition of their house has continuously deterio-rated as the schooling of the children had to be dis-continued and his wife has to learn tailoring, which brought bare minimum into the house.

Compensation System Set Up For Failure The State offers two compensations in cases of enforced disappearances: An ex-gratia amount to the family of the miss-ing person on the condition that the person is dead and was not involved in any ‘militancy related ac-tivities’, in case the missing person returns, the amount has to be returned to the government as well.