Kashmiri Pandits' Association, Mumbai, India

Milchar

Lalla-Ded Educational and Welfare Trust

  Kashmiri Pandits' Association, Mumbai, India

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| Home | January-March 2003 Issue |

Milchar
January-March 2003 issue

Sharika Bhagwati painting

Sharika Bhagwati in Kashmiri Panditani attire
(Photo courtesy, Vitasta Annual, Kashmir Sabha, Kolkata)

Table of Contents

Koshur Music

An Introduction to Spoken Kashmiri

 

Insight 
Whither Kashmiri Pandit Community 
...Moti Lal Khar

A dying language and fading cultural heritage, Kashmiri Pandit community as a whole at present are a worried lot. After their migration from their homes and hearths in Kashmir valley more than a decade ago, feel the strain of keeping their identity alive.

 What bothers the community most is the fate of their language. A dying language threatens the culture and heritage of a community. The new generation in the communiuty does not even speak and know it. The community's sense of let down has been compounded by their own community members who feel it below their dignity to talk or speak in their mother tongue among their children. They adopt western style of life, ignoring the rich culture of their ancestors, although the well wishers of the community are worried how to preserve their traditions.

 A deeply religious community, Kashmiri Pandits worship all Hindu gods and goddesses and have established many such temples like Hari Parbat, Tulmula (Kheer Bhawani) temples and other such 'ashrams' of the Valley, wherever they are scattered in the country and elsewhere. Inspite of this, the fact is that they have westernised their lives and have had too many inter-caste marriages outside their community, forgetting their own roots of rich heritage. No doubt, their rituals are important but they perform these rituals and other social customs with pomp and show and spent lavishly even after migration, and in present distress, they ignore the moral values thus damaging the image and identity of their culture and heritage. Traditionally, Kashmiri Pandit community is an educated community having produced executives, patriots, ministers and bureaucrats in the country. Kashmiri Pandits were also known as great religious preachers, preaching Kashmiri Shaivism. Kashmir was considered a seat of learning and literature. Scholars from different parts of the country and from abroad used to come here to learn.The community at present is on cross roads after their migration from the Valley. Though patriotic and peace loving citizens, they have become refugees in their own country. A leaderless and rudderless community, at present in distress, is fighting for its survival. May God come to rescue the community and its culture and identity.

 The community should follow the path declared in Rigveda as under:

  'Meet together, speak together, let your minds be of one accord - May your Counsel be coomon, your assembly common, common the mind and thoughts of these united - Let your aims be common and your hearts of one accord, and all of you be one mind, so you may live well together.'

  
 

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