“Agar Firdaws ba roy-i zamin ast, hamin ast-u hamin ast-u hamin ast.” “If there is Paradise on earth, it is this, it is this, it is this.” Kashmir’s beauty will always be undermined no matter how many words I use from my humble vocabulary. When it comes to beautiful people, you ought to share their enchanting stories rooted in their profound life experiences.
Imtiaz Ali’s short documentary called ‘Window Seat’ gives a perfect peek into the everyday life of people in one of the most politically controversial states of India. The man in the movie rows a shikara for curious tourists, giving them a slice of the beautiful valley on Dal lake.
He stirs up engaging conversations with the tourists and the locals alike. His life might be mundane, but his humor refuses to turn drab. He laughs, satiates the curiosity of the onlookers and shyly poses for the camera.
The melancholy in the valley also echoes in the movie when he states how the only source of income they have are the tourists. In between the wars of nations, ideologies and political affiliations, it is the Kashmiris that suffer the most. The truth remains; they pay when people fight in swanky boardrooms. All they seek is a normal, unperturbed life.
But with decades of struggle, they have learnt to sneak in laughter in these little moments.
The movie was released on Youtube a year after ‘Rockstar’ was shot in the valley of Kashmir. Watch it here to lose yourself in the real, authentic essence of the present-day Paradise.