Tributes paid to Robert Thorpe on his death anniversary

FARZANA SYED. Dated: 11/23/2017 10:59:33 AM

SRINAGAR, Nov 22: Rich tributes were paid to Robert Thorpe, in Srinagar on Wednesday on his 149th death anniversary. Several human rights groups, members of Civil society remembered Thorp and his priceless sacrifice for people of Kashmir.
Several journalists, members of Civil society, human rights activists gathered at the grave of Robert Thorpe here in Sheikh Bagh locality of Lal Chowk in Srinagar, early in morning and paid glowing tributes while remembering Thorpe's martyrdom.
Considered as the first martyr of Kashmir, Robert Thorpe had laid down his life to lend a voice to the people of valley who were pushed to immense sufferings and hardships by the Maharajas tyranny.
"Robert Thorpe sacrificed his life to save the future of Kashmiris. He was among the first martyrs of Kashmir as he raised his voice against Maharaja’s atrocious rule and oppression upon people of Kashmir,” members of Civil society said.
They said the young generations in Kashmir ought to know about the people like Robert Thorp who despite all odds provided a voice to the voiceless Kashmiris.
In 1865 a young British Army officer, Robert Thorp had arrived in Kashmir as a tourist. On seeing the plight of common Kashmiris under the rule of Maharaja young Thorp stayed in Kashmir to raise his voice against the atrocities committed under Maharaja's rule.
Thorpe started writing about the plight Of Kashmiris to convey it to the world at a time when there were severe restrictions imposed under Maharaja's rule.
Robert Thorp had travelled across Kashmir to know about the sufferings Kashmiris were pushed to by the Maharaja. On collecting facts and incidents of extreme atrocious treatment meted out to Kashmiris, Thorpe wrote a book under the title of 'Kashmir Misgovernment'.
In his book Thorpe penned down the ordeal of Kashmiris under the rule of Maharaja.
"Thorpe made a trenchant critique of the oppressive and discriminatory system of taxation under the Dogras, which he considered analogous to enslavement," spokesperson JKCCS said.
After the publication of his book Thorp was ordered to leave Kashmir, however, he returned to Kashmir on November 21, 1868. Thorp was found dead following morning after he had had his breakfast. Thorp was suspected to have been poisoned to death.
He was buried in the Christian cemetery in Sheikh Bagh locality of Srinagar city. The epitaph on his grave reads: “Robert Thorp, aged 30, who sacrificed his life for Kashmir on 22nd November 1868.”
Speaking on his death anniversary, human rights lawyer, Parvaiz Imroz said,"Robert Thorpe laid down his life for the people of Kashmir and such a sacrifice can never be forgotten".



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