Bathindi and Sunjwan : The Fear of Homelessness

Ayaz Mughal

Bathindi and Sunjwan : The Fear of Homelessness

A home is where the heart is, but what happens when the heart is torn from its roots?"

Homes are not just physical structures made of bricks and mortar, they are much more than that. They are a symbol of security, love, and stability. They represent the memories and moments we share with our families. However, the bitter reality is that it only takes moments to demolish these homes and leave people homeless. This is the story of thousands of families in Bathindi Sunjwan area, where people from different parts of the state have settled over the years.

"Migration may be a means of survival, but it is also a tragedy that tears families apart and leaves them searching for a place to call home."

People in Bathindi & Sunjwan migrated from their original homes due to several reasons, including the lack of basic facilities, education, and health. Some were forced to move here during the militancy period, when they had to choose between death or joining hands with the militants. They chose to migrate to ensure their safety and that of their families. They are the real sufferer of the conflict, the real patriotic. However, now they are facing the prospect of losing their homes once again, and becoming homeless in their own homeland.

People holding Tricolour flags have marched in the streets, demanding that their homes not be demolished. This is a manifestation of their genuine feelings and emotions. A person expressed, "We have spent our entire lives constructing a small home, but it's all for nothing. We will have to start from scratch, which is not an option for me."

The frowning faces and forlorn eyes of small children in Bathindi Sunjwan tell a heart-wrenching story. They are living under the constant fear of becoming homeless, not knowing where they will go or what will happen to them. A child with a trembling voice asked, "Will they demolish our homes? Where will we live then? We don't have any other place to call home". Laws are made to bring development and provide access to land for the people, but the reality is that it is often the poor and marginalized who bear the brunt of such policies.

Many of these families have limited resources and income and have started small businesses and shops, which are their only source of livelihood. They did not grab the lands by force or through any illegal means. If they are dislocated, it will be a great injustice to them, and will lead to disastrous consequences.

The demolition of homes and the displacement of families is not only devastating for the individuals affected, but it also impacts the entire community. These families have established small businesses and shops, creating a source of livelihood for themselves and others in the area. If they are forced to leave, it would not only be an injustice to them but it would also have a disastrous impact on the entire community.

It is imperative that a policy is framed to settle the small residential and commercial structures in Bathindi Sunjwan, and charge them nominal fees. This will ensure that these families are not left homeless and can continue to live and thrive in their homes. Development and prosperity come with people living in peace and harmony, and it is the duty of the state to ensure that everyone has access to a safe and secure home.

"The demolition of a home is the demolition of a dream and a vision."