Srinagar: On May 7, a photograph of a woman with her son went viral on social media despite the ongoing government gag.
The picture was shared widely not because of the innocence it carried, but because the woman in it, Mudasir Javid had allegedly committed suicide, by jumping into river Jehlum from old Zainakadal bridge.
Her family members allege torture by the in-laws, and the husband of the deceased maintains that he is innocent.
“I am ready to be hanged if I am found guilty,”36-year old Javid Ahmed told Free Press Kashmir.
Cops, on the other hand, as of now say that till the body is found, no conclusion can be drawn. “We don’t even know if it is her,” police says.
Mudasir, daughter of Abdul Aziz Butta and Begum Syeda, residents of Pirbagh, Srinagar, was born on January 24th 1980. According to her relatives, she was a quiet, introvert girl. Other than Mudasir, Butta has two more daughters and a son.
“She was sensitive as well as mature. She used to be my cheerful sister,” said Akbar (name changed on request), her cousin.
Mudasir secured her M-Tech degree from the University of Kashmir as a topper. After graduating she started her career as a junior engineer in the Irrigation and Flood Control Department.
An otherwise promising life was cut short. According to her cousin Akbar, she was earning more than 60 thousand per month.
In 2012, Mudasir and Javid had tied the knot. They were blessed with a son and lived together for 5 years. Javid works in Dubai and according to Mudasir’s family, he had been promising to take her there.
Her family says that since the past one year, her weight had drastically reduced and had alleged that her in-laws torture her.
Family version: ‘Despite gifts worth 35 Lakh, demands for dowry started within a week of marriage’
Mudasir’s sister, Saba (name changed on request) told Free Press Kashmir that hers was an arranged marriage. However, her life turned upside down once she entered the house of her in-laws. Mudasir and her family had arranged dowry in the name of ‘gifts’ for her in-laws. They had spent a hefty amount of Rs 30-35 lakhs on dowry that mostly consisted of gold coins and gold jewelery.
Saba alleged that Mudasir began to receive taunts in the first week of her wedding. She had told her parents about the issue. Like many other women in Kashmir, she was asked to ignore it all and “compromise”.
“Shetold us that she was mocked for what she bought for her in-laws as dowry. You know, how we deal with things here, our mother asked her to ignore it. We even visited them but they would not accept it,” said Saba.
“She had already taken a Maruti 800 car for them. They would also take her salary, took out her G P Fund, got car loans issued on her name, an her gold was also taken away from her. She was tortured so much so that she has nothing left by the end,” alleged Saba.
Saba also revealed that she never mentioned her problems again, worrying about her parents’ health.
“Our youngest sister wanted to confront her in-laws but Mudasir begged her not to. She feared being tortured again. She hardly visited us three or four times after the marriage. She was not even allowed to talk to us properly. Her in-laws feared that she might tell us the truth,” said Saba.
The family maintains that there were no signs of physical abuse. But they are sure that Mudasir was facing tremendous mental torture. They also believe that her husband had no plans to take her to Dubai.
“She never told us that they would hit her, but yes, mental torture was there,” said her cousin Akbar. Her husband was in Dubai and he would only make false promises to her that he would call her there. He did not do anything there but had lied to her that he had his own business.”
Their son Hamad, is now 4 years old. “The mother factor is always there. But, imagine the level of torture that she chose to die, leaving her son back,” added Akbar.
Saba told FPK that the day she took the extreme step of ending her life, she had called up another cousin (paternal) and told him that she was again tortured.
She spoke to Saba as well, but disconnected the call suddenly. She had gone to visit her husbands’s aunt who lives nearby. “Friday, at 1, she came back from the doctor. At 4.30pm, I spoke to her. She suddenly asked me to hang up. She had also called our younger sister earlier,” said Saba.
According to the family members, the shopkeepers who witnessed her suicide said that her husband was on the spot within 3 minutes.
“So, he knew it all. He could have saved her. They lived with her husband’s six uncles and their families. They had lied to us that it was their own property,’ added Saba.
Husband’s version: ‘Lost the love of my life. Hang me if I am guilty.’
Javid, on the other hand, says that he has lost the love of his life and pleads innocence.
He said that the police has taken his statement and he would accept the court’s decision.
“If am guilty, hang me. We were in love before getting married. We have now been together for 22 years. Why would I want her to be dead? We have a big family. We earn well enough. We don’t need money,” Javid said.
He said that due to her, he had stopped going to Dubai. Javid also stressed that nothing has been proven yet and no judgment should be passed as of now.
He still hopes that Mudasir is alive and will come back home.
“I used to go to Dubai but because of my marriage, I had stopped going there. I have the tickets, you can see them. We had our family business there. I still am not sure if it’s her. I hope she comes back. I wish it’s someone else.” he says.
“Nothing has been proved yet. Don’t make me and my family to go through this torture before any judgment is passed. Let the police do their job,” adds Javid.
Police version: ‘Can’t say anything till the body is recovered’
An FIR (no. 29) has been registered at M R Gunj Police station regarding the case.
Cops say that till the body isn’t recovered, no conclusion has be reached.
“Due to high flow of the water, we are not able to trace the body. We have been sending our rescue teams every day. Till, we don’t get a hold of the body, we cannot really say if it’s Mudasir or not,” said the Munshi, M R Gunj Police Station.
Talking about the allegations against Javid, police said that the incident took place in evening at around 8.15 pm and there is no evidence against him yet.
“We don’t have any eyewitnesses. It was dark when the event happened and we are still investigating the matter. We cannot say if Mudasir was mentally abused or not. The family says that she had come home only 3 times during 5 years of marriage. If Javid is involved, we will arrest him,” he added.