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Life without a leg and a hand

This is not an ordinary story, it is an untold true story of a 8 year old girl who lost her one hand and a leg when a mortar shell fell on her house in Bara tehsil, KP.

This is not an ordinary story, it is an untold true story of a 8 year old girl who lost her one hand and a leg when a mortar shell fell on her house in Bara tehsil, KP.

It was a cold dark night when Rahida and her sibling were sleeping in the room, when a mortar fired by the Army, dropped on the roof and injured almost everyone in the room. While they were lucky to be alive the doctors had to amputate Rahida’s hand and a foot to save her life. It is really unfortunate as what happened to her and now her life has completely changed. She has lost her smile, she used to play with her sibling and friends but she doesn’t and she can’t play with them anymore. She can’t perform daily activities without someone’s assistance. Her elder sister carries her around who is only 12 years old. According to her family members, civilians are always the victims, on one hand terrorist attack them on the other hand they become collateral damage in such military operations. In another incident one of their neighbors lost four members of his family in a similar attack. They said that when military operation started in Khyber Agency the army aircraft dropped pamphlets which assured locals the operation was only against terrorists and innocent people will not be harmed. But this is certainly not the case, many people considered not to leave their Job and houses and now they are going through tremendous pain and miseries.

Every other week it is reported that 35 to 40 militants are killed in the operation but no body knows the details of anything other than the number. No one cares who those who got killed were and how many of them were civilian? Isn’t it the responsibility of media to reveal all the information? Apparently no one seems to be interested in such news and yes, it does not produce the ratings for TV channels. Some of these areas are unreachable because the accessibility is restricted due to the operation.

According to Rahida’s Father and other locals, there are number of civilian casualties on a daily basis but they are not reported in the media. On the other hand those who decided to leave their houses are actually homeless now. When they return, they would probably not be able to find their houses since they are all destroyed. Almost all the political parties supported the military operation in North Waziristan and no one cared to lay out a plan for internally displaced persons (IDPs) on top of that some of the provinces refused to accept them. According to Internal Displacement Monitoring Center (IDMC), there are at least 1.15 million IDPs in Pakistan as of June 2014 which includes women and children. So far no one knows when this operation will end.

For some people it might just be a sad story but when I look at the life of Rahida and compare it to myself I realize that how difficult it is to live without a hand and a leg, I can’t do my job, can’t drive, can’t play with my kid etc. And unfortunately, those who did that, I have no power to question them. There is no way to file a law suit against them and for sure media cannot highlight this issue either. I ask where are those Pseudo-intellects who think that War is the only solution. Can someone answer when is the Operation Zarb-e-Azb going to end? Will it be successful? And how the success will look like? Meanwhile on January 12th 2015 the secretary of state Mr. John Kerry announced $250 million in emergency aid to help resettle and sustain civilians displaced by the operation. I wonder how much money will actually be spent on civilians and will that money bring the happiness back in their lives? Will Rahida be able to smile again?

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