My birth day comes off on May 25.
On May 25, 2013, I was busy celebrating it with my friends and relatives like every year. I was about to cut the slice of cake when the news flashed saying massive Naxal attack took place at Jhiram Ghati. Top notch politician including Maherendra karma, Nand Kumar Patel, were killed while Vidya Charan Shukla sustained bullets injuries (later he also died)
The news came to us like a bolt from the blue. The brutal Naxal attack took place in the valley called Jhiram that comes under Sukma district in Chhattisgarh. It is about 55 km away from the district headquarter Jagdalpur.
The day 25 May will go down in the history of Bastar and always be remembered as the black day.
I stopped the celebration and started getting updates from the electronic media sources. It began to rain all of sudden causing power failure in the town where I am living. Everyone of us shocked at such an incident. The valley where the attack occurred is about 55 km away from Jagdalpur. Power supply restored within couple of minutes and we switched on the TV to get updates.
Congress was carrying out a “Parivartan Yatra” and the convoy was on its way back to Jagdalpur carrying about 200 congress leaders in 25 vehicles. In the attack , 28 persons, as per the official records were killed.
Ever since, if anyone wishes me saying “Happy Birth Day” on 25 May . I just keep mum and simply say “thanks” giving a fake smile at him. I personally can’t get over from the trauma caused by the massive attack. I don’t know how to react to my friends wishing me on the day but all I can say is that I have stopped celebrating my birth day by the book.
It is true, I am one of the frequent passerby the area where the incident took place. Whenever I go across Jhiram Ghat I just peeped out of the vehicle to catch a glimpse of the site only pay my tribute to martyrs. I am sure my fellow passengers also do the same.
Since it is 25 May today,, I pay my tribute to the people who lost their lives and express my deep sympathy to the families who have lost their important members. Four years have passed since the incident took place but it haunts me as a nightmare.