Since the case of Kathua rape and murder is on boil, the people of the Bakarwal community living in the plains of Jammu and Kashmir do not regard themselves as a religious person.
Due to the stressful situation and temperature rise this year, he has already decided to leave Jammu and go to cold areas earlier this year.
It was also important for them to do so because they were finding it difficult to provide water and fodder for cattle.
8-year-old innocent child’s family members also locked their house in Kathua’s Rasana village and the goods went towards the next stop with the cattle.
A child from the Bakarwal community
Hundreds of Gujjar Bakarwal families, camping alongside other areas along with them, are now turning to the plains of Jammu towards Kashmir and other hilly areas.
Spending the days of summer, these people return to the plains in the month of November. With the start of snowfall in the upper areas, they change their camps.
In place of Jammu Srinagar nation road, these people will be seen walking along their cattle. Some people leave the road and go straight through the hill paths.
Where there is a place to stay, these people collect their camp for a while. After relaxing for some time, after feeding the animals to their livestock, they come out of the next stage.
His life cycle continues continuously, it never stops.
Bakarwal works as a shepherd
Basically, a large and vicious section of the Gujjar community is called ‘Bakarwal’.
The name Kashmiri was given to them by these scholars. In other words, the second name of the people of the Gujjar community is Bakkarwal.
The large number of people belonging to the Bakarwal community work for sheep and goat. There are many leaders who, like Bakarwal, prefer to call themselves Gujjar leaders.
Some of them are those who have studied a bit and are constantly in the process of trying to read and write the people of their community.
But even after 70 years of independence, these people do their livelihood under the blue umbrella of the sky and in the meadow and hill areas and live with their cattle.
Javed Rahi, who has been researching aspects related to the life of Gurjar and Bakalkar, has told BBC Hindi that Gurjar and Bakarwala can be divided into three parts.
According to Javed Rahi, who is also associated with the Tribal Research and Cultural Foundation as a secretary, some Gujjar and Bakarwal are completely nomadic (Fully nomad). These people just go through the forests and they do not have any whereabouts.
In the second category, partial nomad (semi-nomad) comes. According to Javed Rahi, these are the people who have a place to live somewhere and they go for some time in the nearby forests and after spending some time they come back to their camp.
In the third category there are refugee nomads (migranti nomad) who have the status of lodging in the hilly areas and there is a place to live in the plains.
Gurjar and Bakarwal are living in 12 states of India. In addition to India, Pakistan and Afghanistan also have their number.
According to Javed Rahi, their language, vibes, eating habits and lifestyle are their identities, and even after a long period of time, there has not been any change in it till date. The reason for this is not to have direct contact with the fast changing world.
Javed Rahi points out that after a long struggle, the Bakarwals got the tribal status in 1991.
According to the 2011 census, the total population of Gujjar Bakarwal in Jammu and Kashmir is around 12 lakh ie 11 percent of the total population.
Javed Rahi told that according to the census, 9.80 lakh Gujars and 2.17 lakh Bakarwal are living in Jammu and Kashmir.
Javed Rahi says this figure is not even accurate. The main reason for this is that at the time the Census Officers were counting on the ground, at that time a large number of Bakarwal people were in their own danger and there were some nomads, which could not be properly counted. According to his estimates, such Bakarwal / Gujjar people are between five and six lakhs.
Bakarwal people who sell their goods and livestock generally feed sheep, goats, horses and dogs.
The meat which is demanded in Jammu and Kashmir is fulfilled with the animals procured through Rajasthan and in the state, Gurjar / Bakarwal especially on the occasion of Eid, at the time of festival and the traditional customs, fulfills the demand of the locals. Are there.
According to Javed Rahi, people of Bakarwal community still buy goods used for their use only by ‘bartter system’ ie swap.
These people do not have accounts in the bank nor do they believe in the banking system.
According to him, for a long time, he has been demanding that he be provided food security as per his requirement but the government has not yet made a concrete policy.
Javed Rahi says, “He also recommended it to the government, but so far he has not been paid attention on his behalf.”
They said that the government has not yet understood the fact that these people have not settled in one place.
If the government has to help them, then there will be a creative plan in which their helpers are mobile too. But till now nothing like this has happened.
Social Security and Health
The people of Bakarwal community are still very much left away from studies. Government has arranged a large number of mobile schools.
Young people who have studied a little in the middle of these jobs have been given jobs in these mobile schools but till date, the success of the scheme has been questioned.
While going to Chandavi along with his camp, Bakarwal, Basharat Hussain told BBC Hindi that the government opened the school but it is not possible to study there.
He said that when we live in one place for three to four months and then go out to another place, how will the children study?
He has given only one demand from the government on the condition of the latest situation that he and his cohorts should not be destroyed.
Basharat Hussain told that when he goes to his hideout through the road, there is a big problem due to traffic on the way.
They had to say that they have to decide long journeys with cattle, so if the government wants it can help them. Traffic can be turned off for some time as the traffic is controlled on the highways, as is the case with their dues.
Javed Rahi also said that a large number of opened mobile schools are running only in government paper due to lack of infrastructure.
They said that the school is without any shelter, there is no mid-day meal arrangement for children and no copy book is available.
He said that how can the young man himself teach lesson to the second generation?
Talking about the health of Bakarwal children and women, Javed Rahi said that there will be very few selected families who have vaccinated their children.
They said that these people do not criticize their cattle or their children, nor do they criticize the cattle. Javed Rahi said that his organization had done a survey in which it found that 90 per cent of children were not given any vaccine by their family members.
They said that these people, while roaming in the forests, continue to collect herbs and treat their disease according to their understanding and experience.
He believed that because these people roam the mountains and live in fresh air, they do not bother with common diseases. This is the reason why this section continues till now without any government support.
Jawed Rahi said that the laws which have been passed all over India for the right of these people have not been adopted in Jammu and Kashmir so far.
He said that the Indian government implemented the law passed in the Forest Rights Act 2006 but in the state of Jammu and Kashmir it has not yet been implemented.
Similarly, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act or SC / ST Act has not yet been implemented in the state.
According to Javed Rahi, if our community gets reservation, then we will have some ease in fighting our rights.
Gujjar Bakarwal community living in the areas along the border of the country have been continuously contributing to the defense of the country.
Javed Rahi said that history is a witness when the army needs some help on the border, the Gujjar Bakarwal families came forward and helped the army and played an important role in delivering logistics to the advance posts.
Wherever the people of Gujjar Bakarwal community are settled in the plains or hill areas, they have not lodged any complaint against them from anywhere.
This community has always sacrificed for restoration of peace and peace and made important contributions to keeping social warfare strong.
In the Police Department in Jammu and Kashmir, in the University, the people of the Gujjar community, educated in government departments, are contributing.