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A father’s obit: ‘My son, Eisa Fazili, has left for heavenly abode’

Father


Srinagar, Mar 12: At around 3 am on Monday, Naeem Fazili, the father of militant Eisa Fazili, received a call from Soura police station.
“He did not tell me straightaway,” Naeem recollects his phone conversation with the station in-charge. “I asked him if it was innilillahi was innaillahi rajioon (the prayers Muslims say on death). He said ‘yes’.”
The message must have been jarring, if not unexpected, for Fazili, a principal at a government higher secondary school here.
At dawn, he put on the Facebook an obituary that can only be seen in Kashmir: “As per reliable sources, my son Eisa Fazili has left for heavenly abode. Innilillahi wa innaillahi rajioon!”
Eisa, Naeem’s second son, was among the three militants killed at around midnight in a brief shootout at Hakoora in south Kashmir’s Anantnag.
He had been a student of B. Tech final year in Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah University at Rajouri.
Choosing to tread the lethal path, he picked up arms to become a militant in August last year, prior to which no one had had a sniff of his intentions.
“We were completely taken aback when we heard about him becoming a militant. It was unexpected,” said the father, who had responded to his son’s departure with the passionate appeals for return made through social-media.
Eisa, however, ignored them all.
Seven months later, Naeem stood close to Eisa’s body carried in a truck surrounded by a sea of people close to their residence at 90-feet road, Soura.
“He willed me to offer his funeral prayers,” Naeem announced to countless faces looking at him.
“My son gave his life for Allah. I request you to remain calm. We will offer his Jinazah here and he will be buried in our local graveyard,” he appealed the sloganeering people, many of whom wanted Eisa to be buried in the martyrs’ graveyard at Eidgah.
“He was very pious. As a student of Burn Hall School, he was the person who ensured that the students were allowed to offer namaz in school,” one of the hundreds of youth attending the funeral, told The Kashmir Monitor.
After offering his midday prayers in the Masjid, where Eisa once used to pray, Naeem returned to lead the funeral prayer attended by thousands of people arranged in rows, some waiting patiently, others shouting their hearts and lungs out.
Nearby, his house was, however, was quiet: no wails or shrieks indicating how the family must have been waiting for Eisa’s return to home, lifeless on a hospital stretcher, shrouded in a blanket.