A terrifying account of his torture by Indian troops while a small boy by Kashmiri Aahil Asif:

“In year 93 when I was still a boy, the BSF cordoned off our locality Maharaj Gunj. As usual announcement was made on loudspeakers to gather in Sokali pora near Mirwaiz Manzil Rajouri Kadal. I was naive, wearing school uniform & wasn’t aware of what horrible experience I was about to undergo. As all marched towards vacant area of Sokali pora, parade began in front Gypsy (small military jeep) which had informers inside to identify anybody (in most cases to save their own skin and apprehend someone to please their masters). It wasn’t in my wildest dreams that I will face hell soon.

When I stood in front the Gypsy, the sound of horn was heard and immediately my hell experience dawned upon me. My shirt was removed and I was blind folded, hands cuffed and feet tied. They kept me behind Gypsy till parade of people was completed. Seven more people were picked up. I was confused what crime I was picked up for. All of sudden they brought a Wanton, a small mini truck, and we were taken to Nowhatta BSF camp where the initial interrogation will be done.

The first person who was taken to interrogation room was the guest of our neighbour. They started his interrogation at 7.30 in the morning till 11.30. You can imagine what may go through a person’s mind when he knows he is the next one to be treated like that. We were in an animal slaughter house. I was hearing painful shrieks and shouts as they interrogated him. Totally unbearable. When they took him out, he was bleeding from cuts all over his body. I thought for a second he is dead, a walking Zombie.

Then I was taken in. I saw two officers (Kalia and Rajinder). Any of you who lived in downtown during 90’s will surely know these beasts. They laughed at me, I saw blood everywhere, blood stains on walls, and smell of human flesh. They stripped me naked and tied me with ropes. Electric wire was wrapped around my toes and private part. A single power touch which they gave us is equal to one thousand dog bites together. It was enormous pain and straight away bleeding started from my nose and mouth and yet they did not stop there. My left hand was cut multiple times with Razer blade and chilly was sprinkled onto the wounds. Barrage of sticks were unleashed. All I could wish or do is ask Allah to take my soul. Soon I fell down unconscious. They poured water on me, for me to regain consciousness to keep doing what they were doing. They kept asking me to hand over to them weapons and information about militants of my locality. How could a kid know all this? At least I did not. But they didn’t agree! My terrible interrogation continued .

Finally I decided to lie to them in order buy some respite in ruthless beating. I told them I will lead them to a hideout. It worked out. They brought additional forces to raid a house I mentioned as sheltering militants. I was taken to Aali kadal BSF camp and got more force. While I stay chained inside the Gypsy, I heard a voice of a little girl…. Mera bhai ko chodo woh be-gunah hai….. “leave me Brother. He is innocent.” She was none other than my beloved little sister. I never felt so emotional and helpless as I felt at that moment. Finally I took them to the house and they picked up one person namely Shakeel Ahmad who is mentally challenged . When he was brought out, he was accompanied by his sister. When she looked at me, she shed tears and told these beasts that I did the right thing to raid their house otherwise they would receive me in a shroud. When I heard these words, I folded my hands and asked for her forgiveness. She cried a lot after seeing me soaked in blood.

The BSF beasts realised I lied to them and I was returned to interrogation center and badly beaten again. Again I felt unconscious and remained so for few hours despite their attempts to get me back to my senses. A doctor was brought and he told them that I won’t survive if not taken to hospital immediately. I was released at night . My neighbours rushed me to Headwun hospital but doctors there told them to shift me to Soura medical institute. After treatment I started to recover but occupation pain will remain forever.

I don’t write this to gain sympathy or trying to be some sort of a hero. This is the story of hundreds of thousands of Kashmiris. I share it to record the atrocities of this occupation and give voice to thousands of others who have had similar or worse experience.

India can hold us to it by chains but it can never ever make us Indian. We are free in our minds and soon our bodies too will be Free. One way or other. InshaAllah!”