07 March, 2021

24 Hours In Life Of Mushtaq Ahmad Malik: Battling To Resurrect The Apple Of His Labour

Mushtaq Ahmad Malik's apple orchard in Kashmir was flattened by a blizzard early November. It not only destroyed his garden but left a bitter taste in the mouth as well

Photograph by Mushtaq Ahmad Malik
24 Hours In Life Of Mushtaq Ahmad Malik: Battling To Resurrect The Apple Of His Labour
outlookindia.com
2019-11-25T11:51:20+05:30

Mushtaq Ahmad Malik could barely recognise his orchard. A thick blanket of snow covered the apple trees, many of them ­uprooted. Most lay in tangled heaps, branches twisted by the sheer force of nature. And the apples? They lay scattered, most of them no longer fit for consumption. A night of blizzard on November 8 has laid waste the 58-year-old apple-grower’s month’s of back-breaking labour in the picturesque hamlet of Pahnu, a 30-minute walk from his house in Shopian.

For apple-growers of Kashmir, already battling emotional trauma and econo­mic hardships following staggering pol­itical changes, the November night’s heavy snowfall has only added to their misery. For Malik, daily life has become a ­routine since the devastation of his ­orchard. “(After the snowfall) it took to me three hours to reach my apple ­orchard from my home. My heart sank on seeing the ­produce buried under snow,” he says. Around 700 apple trees once stood on his now-flattened ­orchard spread over just under one acre.

Every morning...

More from Naseer Ganai


Latest Magazine

March 15, 2021
content

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section