‘Documenting a story like this was like reopening a wound’

First appeared in Tehelka, 2014

I have grown up under the shadow of guns. I have seen uniformed men with AK-47s slung over their shoulders come to my home at odd hours and throw my small schoolbag out. I remember the searches and parades in my primary school premises — army convoys coming to fight hiding militants, mortar shells blowing up houses, and common people being caught in the crossfire of warring parties and suffering for nothing. I would shudder to think of how it felt to be questioned for nothing or get slapped for nothing.

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