This will come as a body blow in more ways than one to Kashmir’s once dreaded jihadis. On Sunday, Abu Usama and his two terrorist accomplices found that they had a real fight on their hands when they entered the home of 21-year-old Rukhsana and her family with the intention of holding them hostage. Despite being thrashed mercilessly by the AK-47-wielding terrorists, Rukhsana literally scared the daylights out of the so-called battle-hardened jihadis when she laid about them with an axe, killing one. The fearsome fighters tarried no longer and the other two, one wounded, took to their heels. So much for the much-touted jihadi principle of disdain for the corporeal body when rewards await the immortal soul in heaven in the form of houris and wine.
Now courageous as Rukhsana was to fend off the terrorists, she is part of a generation that has grown up amid violence.
Increasingly, fed up of the harassment by terrorists who rape and kill at will, many women in Kashmir have lost their fear of these cowards and have started standing up to them. An example is that of a woman who bashed up a terrorist inside a police station in Bhaderwah after she had been taken away by him and his cohorts earlier and raped for over a month.
The fact that local people are turning against the self-styled jihadis is directly attributed to the fact that most of them are simply thugs driven by no higher purpose that looting and molesting women. And, of course, publicity. A former foreign correspondent once wrote about how a group of jihadis approached him and asked him to write about them with the bizarre introduction “we are an ambush.” Now they have to be afraid, very afraid of potential Rukhsanas lying in wait to ambush them.