Monday, 13 September 2010

a school in Kashmir burnt in reaction to a pastor in Florida

Ed Lorenz famously said that a butterfly flaps its wings in the Amazon and there is a Hurricane on the other side of the world. (1972 “Predictability: Does the Flap of a Butterfly’s Wings in Brazil Set Off a Tornado in Texas?”) A threat of burning a Koran by a small town pastor of a tiny congregation in Florida and the next thing you know there are riots in Kabul and then in Kashmir schools being burnt. It is worth noting that this is a supposed 'reaction' or response to the proposed 'Koran Burnings' that did not actually happen. Fighting fire with fire just does not make sense to me.

I received a number of messages about the Tyndale Biscoe School in Tangmarg. I visited it a couple of months ago and it was definitely one of the highlights of our trip - seeing the kids reherse a cultural performance they were doing for their proud parents. And a real sense of bringing education to remote under-served areas where it was most needed. I remember two young girls I spoke to during the tea break and their dream to be doctors..... Now all such dreams are on hold.

I include some of the messages as I received them and the unfolding story of this senseless waste.....

Bishop Pradeep Samantaroy of Amritsar writes:
following the Quaran burning threats in America, the Tangmarg branch of the Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson Educational Society in Jammu and Kashmir has been put on fire. Curfew has been imposed. Even as this message is being typed, the school building is still burning! Kindly pray that peace will be restored soon and that nobody is hurt.
Read more from the local press in Greater Kashmir and Kashmir Observer

S. Samantaroy The School students are not hurt. The building has totally burnt down. It was entirely made of wood. Though the officials were informed of a possible attack and requested for safety there was no action taken. The mob even stopped the fire brigade from reaching the spot. We are yet to procure a photograph. We will keep you updated.

Bishop Pradeep Samantaroy I am heart broken because I was involved with the Tangmarg School from the time we selected the land. I saw the building built and the School grow and flourish with committed staff and beautiful Kashmiri children. The School was more like a beautiful garden. How can I see it turn to ashes? The students are crying because they learnt their School is no more.


Sam said...

It is a shame that our dear Biscoe school has been burnt by these fanatics. I studied at CMS Lal Chowk and have been taught by the likes of JM Ray, Sat Lal Razdan, Rajinder and Rabinder Kaul, Amin Magloo, MAster Gulam Qadir etc etc.

Last I heard Master Rajinder was doing some good work in Tangmarg. The guys who burnt this great temple have no idea what they have done. Although I never studied at Tangmarg but I can feel the pain sitting thousands of miles away.
-Samvit Rawal

Nidiaci said...

I notice that in Italy, this episode has given rise to much anti-Islamic noise, yet nobody has come here to simply express solidarity and sympathy to those who worked and studied at the school.

Let me do so, at least, hoping the school will soon be rebuilt and peaceful relations among all re-established.

Miguel Martinez

MullanaNasruddin said...

Sam and Miguel
Thanks for your comments of solidarity which I will pass on
It was a very sad incident The authorities in Kashmir have promised to help rebuld But we will wait and see
I will try to keep an eye on this one ......