“Think about the moment your body is being washed and prepared to your grave. Think about the day people will be carrying you to your grave. And your families crying,” the poem on Feroz Dar’s Facebook wall read.
32-year old slain Sub-Inspector Feroz Ahmed Dar was lowered into his grave Friday night in his family’s ancient graveyard in Dogripora village in Pulwama district with many a tearful farewell from his village and police department. Villagers had queued up in front of the house to pay their condolences as the family struggled to come to terms with their loss.
About four and a half years ago on January 18, 2013, a younger Dar had mused in a Facebook post about the final moments in which a body is surrendered to its grave, bereft of everyone and everything, except its own deeds. “Just imagine…yourself in your grave. Down there in that dark hole…Alone”, he had written — haunting words that came true Friday. Dar and five other personnel were killed in Anantnag’s Achabal area on Friday in an ambush by militants suspected to belong to Lakhkar-e-Taiba.
Nicknamed as dabang (daring) and one-man-army by his friends, Dar earnestly cherished the dream of a return to peaceful times that have long eluded Kashmir. On March 8, 2013 he wrote, “Oh! God when will be the day we see normal Kashmir”.
Dar’s batchmate Sunil Sharma posted his picture and recalled the lyrics of a song in memory of those martyred in war:
His batchmates and colleagues also recalled their association with Dar and said he was a god-fearing man and a true Muslim who offered prayers five times a day.
Swayam Prakash Pani, Deputy Inspector General of Police, South Kashmir wrote on his official Facebook page, “My sun always sets to rise again…..RIP. The officer whom everybody loved and who could get the support and respect of everybody around will always be in our hearts. This inhuman act will be punished and punished suitably. Condolences for all the men that we lost today”, along with photos of the slain policemen and their biers wrapped in the Tricolor.
Dar is survived by both his parents, wife Mubeena Akhtar, two daughters Addah and Simran, aged 6 and 2 respectively and also by his dream of a peaceful Kashmir.
(Written with PTI inputs)