Kashmir Diary – Martyr’s Graveyard, Srinagar
The unhappy land.
[Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi]
The graves are covered with grass, irises and roses.
The Martyr’s Graveyard in Old Srinagar is crowded with men who, it is said, died in the struggle for an independent Kashmir.
The Delhi Walla is in Kashmir’s capital.
The sky is overcast. It is cold.
Inscription on the gate:
Lest You Forget We Have Given Our Today for Tomorrow of Yours
A cobbled path snakes through the cemetery. One grave is draped with a sheet of blue silk. Another has a garland of plastic flowers. Some are surrounded by red roses.
A few graves are left empty for tomorrow’s martyrs.
A lamb is grazing on the adjacent lawn.
Far away, black clouds are coming down the pale blue hills that ring the city.
A young man enters the cemetery, and stands beside a grave.
It is starting to rain.
In the hotel, the manager tells me, “Mirwaiz Molvi Farooq, our religious leader who was assassinated in 1990, is buried in that cemetery. His assassin too has his grave there. The Martyr’s Graveyard is Kashmir’s strangest place.”
Loved by the rose
Once was a life
It’s like picnic
The grass off the martyrs