Srinagar, May 8: Shocked, there is massive outrage over the killing of a Chennai tourist in a stone pelting incident on Srinagar-Baramulla road. The body of the young tourist R Thiru Mani has already reached home along with his father, mother, and sister.
Tourist R Thiru Mani
Police have started investigations in the case and they have already arrested at least three persons in this connection.
Thiru Mani had studied at DRBCCC Hindu College and was working at Accenture Chennai, his facebook suggests. He lived in Avadi in Chennai.
The 4-member family had driven to Srinagar by road on May 7. Since they had travelled by road – by rail up to Delhi, they were tired and took rest. Their Gulmarg trip was the first activity of the family in their five-days scheduled trip.
“They had left for Gulmarg in a Tavera and they were four members of the family including his parents,” one senior officer in the state government said. “It was around 7:30 am when they were travelling somewhere in between Narbal and Magam that they were hit by a few stones.”
Thiru Mani received a serious injury on his forehead, hitting his eye. He was immediately rushed to the hospital. “In eight hours, we had two CT Scans on him and then, all of a sudden, he had convulsions and breathed his last,” the officer, who was with the family in SKIMS for most of the day said.
Initial information that the officer had about the stone pelting incident said that there were a few boys on the road who were disrupting the movement of the traffic. Hospitality professionals are usually taking tourists out of Srinagar early during abnormal situations.
Mani’s death has triggered outrage across the civil society in Kashmir.
“Death of an Indian tourist in Kashmir stone pelting incident is sad an unfortunate,” Mubashir Wani wrote on his facebook. “It also shows the ugly side of unruly stone pelting brigades. Resistance should make us feel proud, and not guilty.”
Another user Jonas A Bhat wrote: “If the news is not fake, then that stone pelter must be stoned to death publicly period,”
“An attack on any tourist is an attack on Kashmiriyat and we condemn such actions in the strongest possible words,” another user Ahmed Farooq wrote.
Fasil Mohammad Sofi wrote: “We are sorry our religion does not teach us to treat guests like this. May Allah forgive us.”
“This person who pelted stones on tourist bus cannot be Kashmiris we have never treated our guests like this, never ever- this inhuman barbaric act is strongly condemned,” M Younis Naik wrote.
Adnan Nazir wrote, “This is not attacking tourists, but an attack on the hospitality of Kashmiris, I condemned this attack.”
The political class of the state has already reacted angrily to the killing. Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti already visited the family in Police Hospital within PCR Srinagar last night. Her predecessor Omar Abdullah regretted the loss in a tweet. Omar is visiting Ladakh.
Jammu and Kashmir Democratic Freedom Party (JKDFP) termed the Narbal incident as unfortunate and expressed solidarity with the bereaved Chennai family.
While expressing serious concern over the slain tourists’ death, CPI (M) leader and MLA Kulgam Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami said that such unfortunate and condemnable incidents send a wrong message which ultimately damages the interests of the people of the state. “Whose ‘cause’ is fulfilled by such brutal killings,” he asked.
At a time when the people of Kashmir are facing tough times what is required is utmost restraint and wisdom to garner more support from the people and civil society of the country so as to put pressure on the authorities to listen to the legitimate voices of the people of Kashmir. “Unfortunately such acts only serve the interests of those who want to undermine and ignore the democratic aspiration of Jammu and Kashmir,” Tarigami said.
Meanwhile, Tanveer Fatima, who heads the Peoples Democratic Movement on Tuesday held a protest demonstration in solidarity with the slain tourist in press colony Srinagar.
Fatima alleges that she was detained by Parimpora police station for standing in solidarity with the slain tourist.
“I expressed my solidarity by standing there that too alone but police detained me for almost half an hour for no reason at all,” she said.