On April 9 this year, Tahira Khatoon woke up to the news of her son Qamer joining the Hizbul Mujahideen in Kashmir. For the family of a freedom fighter this news was not just a shocker, but heart-wrenching.
Qamer Uz Zaman, alias Dr. Hurairah, a most-wanted Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist, was arrested from Kanpur on September 12. Qamer hails from the Hojai district of Assam. He reportedly joined the terror outfit in 2017 at which point he stopped contacting his family. His family also filed a missing person report in this regard, but in April 2018, following a social media post by a handle of the terror outfit, it became clear that he had taken the path of militancy. In that social media post, Qamer was seen holding an AK-47 rifle.
When media thronged his ancestral home in Hojai's Jamunamukh area, his family was in the state of shock. His mother Tahira Khatoon was bold and quick to disown him, even appealing to the government to kill her son. The boldness of Tahira sent a strong message to one and all. Indeed, it was shocking for the family of a freedom fighter.
Qamer’s grandfather Rehnuddin Bepari was a freedom fighter. Inspired by the ideals and principles of Mahatma Gandhi he joined the freedom movement against the British and even faced time in jail. No one would have ever thought that the grandson of a person who fought for the independence of the country from British rule would one day take up arms and join a secessionist movement.
After Qamer’s arrest on September 12, once again, the media thronged his ancestral home. Last time his mother was in tears, but this time, she remained stoic. Tahira Khatoon once again appealed to the government to kill her son. “Any child who goes against the country is of no use,” said Tahira Khatoon.