“June 14 was a horrific day for me and my family,” writes Tamheed Shujaat Bukhari, the son of senior Kashmiri journalist Shujaat Bukhari, who was shot dead in a brutal attack a week ago.
Tamheed has penned a heartfelt note in Rising Kashmir, the newspaper his late father was the editor of, recalling the horrific personal tragedy that took place on 14 June.
“I still couldn’t understand why someone would do this to a righteous man like my father, Shujaat Bukhari,”, Tamheed laments.
The 10th standard student recounts what he felt after learning about his father’s death. As thousands gathered inside the Police Control Room, he remembers being sad while trying to come to terms with the news and attempting to “endure the pain.”
Recalling his father’s nature, Tamheed writes that despite being a senior journalist, a thinker and an “epitome of knowledge, benevolence, munificence and a thousand other noble qualities,” Bukhari never had any conceit. He would treat staff members at office like family and during the 2014 floods, he extended immense help to scores of families.
Tamheed writes that despite being surrounded by thousands of haters, Bukhari never uttered any bitter word against any of them.
Tamheed also writes about how the Kashmir turmoil has affected his family. His father is not the only one to have been martyred in the turmoil.
Speaking about journalism and his father in a journalistic capacity, Tamheed says, that Kashmir’s English journalism had produced no martyrs till now. He remembers how Bukhari always stood for unbiased journalism and never took sides, even for his brother, a politician. Everybody loved him and had an emotional connection with him, writes Tamheed, which is why Rising Kashmir rose to such prominence so soon.
An experienced and respected journalist, Bukhari was known for his fearless stance on peace in Kashmir.
Bukhari’s death, on the eve of Eid, hit the nation with a jolt, with politicians and journalists all condemning the brutal attack. Journalists in Delhi held a solidarity meet days after his murder, condemning Bukhari’s killing, which they called an attack on free speech in Kashmir.
(With inputs from Rising Kashmir.)
(Audio Courtesy: Muhammad Mukaram)