Kashmir– a land that was once known as the heaven on earth, has now been marred by decades of violence and bloodshed. Devoid of the love of its inhabitants and the peace, the Kashmir valley today looks like a gloomy painting that knows nothing but its never-ending dark ages. At a time when terrorism seems to have broken down the spirit of the valley and war has murdered the hopes of normalcy, noted Kashmiri folk singer Neerja Pandit has returned to the valley nearly after two decades of leaving her motherland behind.

She has a tale to tell and her song– ‘Kashmir‘ featuring Bollywood actor and Kashmiri activist Anupam Kher, is every Kashmiri’s distant dream. Her song not only talks about how the valley was burnt down into ashes but also of the resilience and hopes of a lost soul of a young Kashmiri girl who is determined to find her way back to her home amidst the beauty that the valley represents.

Bu sombraawakh paninyee shuyr batsch saryee,”– she sings as she hopes to bring her children back to the land that was once her home. Her soulful voice is backed by a stoic narration by Kher. “Chalega kafila yaaron ka saath, Sajenge shikaare dulhan se, Lehrati jheelon ki bujhegi pyaas, Goonjegi loriyaan galiyon mein, Phir bacchon ki kilkaariyaan baandhengi samaa,” he says as hopes that the valley would return to normal someday.

The song brings the pain of separation even as it tries to paint the image of an optimistic future. Listen to the song to take a short trip to the paradise. The song has been composed by Pt Bhajan Sopori and produced by Ashoke Pandit.