A hundred days ago, the lives of several hundred people in this nation and abroad changed – for the worse. A friend, son, confidant, a brave soul was cut down.
Undoubtedly, writing about the murder of someone you know, even distantly, is one of the hardest thing a journalist has to do. Yaamyn Rasheed was one of those few people who had dared to go against the grain of the society, established norms and dared to question the unquestionable. What does one do when the voice that advocated justice, is killed unjustly?
Yaamyn was a humanist. Morals came first to him. He was one of the few voices who had refused to give up on trying to find out what happened to his best friend, missing journalist Ahmed Rilwan. In spite of the constant threats on him, Yaamyn refused to give up his beliefs. Whom amongst us can honestly say that?
In a society where we claim faith, compassion and empathy, we have failed in those aspects. We have failed to note that several among us have been rooted from the society, abducted or murdered, without for once thinking that life is sacred. How majority of us go to sleep unfettered by these thoughts, I cannot understand.
One of my friends called from Australia, mere minutes after I was woken up with the news. She was one of the last people to have talked to Yaamyn. The last words she had exchanged with Yaamyn spoke volumes about him, his character and how much he loved those around him.
Since the day Yaamyn was murdered, I have listened to people, in mangled terms, attempt to justify his death. Some liberally used the word “laadheenee” or irreligious to describe him. Others are quick to point out a person’s death is a reflection on his life. One truly gets to know the good, the bad and the ugly of a society when something like this happens.
The good was that there were many who united in grief, struggling to find justice for Yaamyn's murder and keep his memories alive.
The bad is seeing many who are able to move on with their lives, unfazed by it. The ugly is seeing how some justify his murder and judge Yaamyn, even after his murder.
But mostly I have seen frustration. Frustration over the lack of progress into the investigation of his murder. Frustration over the rejection of letters begging for an impartial investigation. Frustration over lack of answers. Frustration over the number of distractions thrown at those who are looking into the murder. Frustration over the simple question – why?
Yaamyn did not die. To pass off his demise as a mere death, is in itself an injustice. He was 29, had his whole life ahead of him. His murder was a well-planned hit; a warning to those who had similar views to that of Yameen’s and those who dared to question.
We mark 100 days to Yameen’s murder, amid headlines of multiple stabbings and two deaths resulting from those stabbings. The number of murders in this country have rapidly increased, counting in double digits. In those 100 days, Police had raised charges against seven individuals. Six were charged with first degree murder while one was charged as an accessory. Some progress; but it still fails to answer one key question – what was the motive for killing Yaamyn?
It’s a question we may never find out an answer to.