A photo of mini-India in Kashmir takes internet by storm

Imagine a Muslim CRPF jawan in uniform saying Namaz on the roadside as a Hindu CRPF personnel stands guard in Kashmir.

The picture exemplifying mini-India in Kashmir amid the separatist propaganda has taken the internet by storm. The man offering namaz was initially said to be a policeman, but later CRPF clarified that both men belong to the 118 battalion which is posted to guard Amarnath yatra pilgrims.

“There is immense camaraderie at the ground level in the CRPF. Religion, caste and language do not matter at all. I talked to the commandant who confirmed that they belong to CRPF 118 battalion,” said Ravideep Sahi, inspector general of police, CRPF.

From the Director General of Police, Jammu and Kashmir to AIMIM leader Asadudin Owaisi to bollywood lyricist Javed Akhtar, this picture is being shared on Twitter and other social media platforms.

The picture was clicked in Lar village of Ganderbal district in central Kashmir near Baltal — the base camp for the Amarnath yatra. Jammu and Kashmir Police and CRPF men are deployed on this stretch to ensure a peaceful Yatra.

It was during this duty on Saturday that a CRPF man offered Zahur prayers (afternoon Namaz) while the other CRPF soldier stood guard till his associate finished his Namaz.

“I was sitting in my office having lunch when I saw, from my window, someone offering prayers on roadside and a CRPF soldier stand guard for him. It was a unique sight, and it also symbolises our secularism. So I decides to capture it. Rest is history,” said Lateef Ali, station house officer of Lar Police station.

Director General of Police, Jammu and Kashmir, SP Vaid told DNA that it shows the camaraderie on the ground. “It is great. What else can be a bigger camaraderie than this,” he said.

The internet has erupted in joy after the picture went viral. “What a heartwarming moment. CRPF jawan standing guard while a Jammu and Kashmir cop offers prayers in Kashmir. Diversity is our strength!” tweeted Javaid Trali, media analyst of Jammu and Kashmir government.