June 2002 News

Muslim youth saves Hindu shoe-shine boy in Kashmir

5 June 2002
The Daily Excelsior

Baramullah: Even as shells slam forward defence positions and withering machine- gun fire becomes a daily feature along the Indo-Pak border, humanity emerged a winner in insurgency-riven Jammu and Kashmir when a Muslim youth leaped into the swirling waters of the Jhelum to save a Hindu shoe-shine boy last evening. Poverty probably made Satarna take the extreme step and plunge into the river, flowing towards Pakistan- occupied Kashmir, at Azad Gunj near here. However, the stars had something else in store for Satarna. Throwing caution to the winds, Tariq Ahmad, sitting on the river bank, plunged into the gushing waters and saved Satarna. ''It hardly matters to me whether the person saved was a Muslim or a Hindu,'' Tariq said and added proudly that he saved an ''Insaan (human being)''. ''It took me just a few seconds to jump into the river when I saw Satarna struggling,'' he said. Satarna, who was taken home in a procession, promised that he would not repeat his act even if he and his family faced starvation. ''It was a rebirth for me and Tariq came as an ‘Avtaar’,'' he said.


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