I: Chapter 15
BHATTO AHAM - A CRY IN AGONY
the wake of Zain-ul-Abdin's death, Kashmir was again hurled into the vortex
of chaos, disorder and unprecedented religious bigotry. Haider Shah (1470-72)
lecherous and a rake, given to the company of ravishing damsels and bouts
of drinking proved wild and ferocious for the Hindus of Kashmir. Not only
that he harassed and persecuted them, but also killed them with all vengeance.
Revolting against the policy of liquidating them, the Hindus in sheer anger
and desperation mobbed most of the mosques built on the temple plinths
with temple materials and set them afire. The Sayyid Ali mosque constructed
on the plinth of a ravaged and spoliated temple was the main target and
was burnt to cinders. This incident when broached to the Sultan touched
his raw nerve and not taking it lying town, he issued an atrocious decree
of chopping off the noses, ears and arms of the Hindus through the length
and breadth of Kashmir.
upon it, the Hindus were swooped and caught and subjected to the vile and
bloody orgy of flenching the body parts and limbs. Dragging Hindus out
from their houses, a brutality in itself, many of them were sawed and chopped
into two halves, an atrocity unknown to ferocious savages. Terrorised beyond
limits, they flinched and wilted, fell and faltered and in pain and agony
yelled out their lungs" Na Bhatto Aham"(I am not a Bhatta, a Kashmiri Hindu)
only to avoid the bloody orgy of mutilation of body parts.