After about 4 months (since Aug 15th) some refugees began to come to Jammu from the neighboring Sialkot district. They told gory tales. Muslims of the area had turned against all non-Muslims, particularly Hindus and Sikhs. The government machinery had collapsed, the police had turned biased in favor of Muslims and the army was not fully able to restrain the violence. Hindus and Sikhs were forced to leave their villages and walk to Indian Punjab to the south. Old people, small children, mothers with newborn babies, the sick; everyone had to leave.
We later heard that initially the Muslims of Judhala promised full support to the Hindus. They even said that they would protect them with their lives. But as violence spread in the surrounding villages they felt helpless and withdrew support.
The Hindus and Sikhs of Judhala then made up their mind to leave. They joined neighboring villages to form a small group. As they moved, other groups merged with them seeking safety in numbers. Some of them contained more than ten thousand individuals. Muslim fanatics attacked them. Many were killed. Some women were snatched from the group and dragged away. The refugees were totally unarmed. The local Muslims had crude weapons such as swords, sickles, choppers, knives, or sticks. A few had old muzzle loading guns. With this crude assortment they managed to massacre a large number of frightened, unarmed, and uprooted persons. Their only protection was army units consisting of Hindu and Sikh soldiers. Time and time again whole groups were saved by just a handful of them. These soldiers had orders to shoot and kill, but often their mere presence was enough to scare the attackers away. According to official figures (always lower than actual) half a million were killed.
Most refugees that came to Jammu had lost some members of their families. Some had lost all. Most were injured, some quite badly. All were angry and seething to avenge the harm done to them. They began to crowd around Muslim areas in the city and make threatening gestures. Unfortunately, the Muslims too turned hostile. They tried to turn their streets into fortified camps. The hotheads among them fired gunshots to show off their strength. The refugees were itching for a fight anyway. Riots broke out. Refugees and local Hindu hoodlums attacked Muslims. One of the main streets, in the center of town was overrun and almost everyone (all Muslims) killed in all night mayhem. Even without waiting for the area to be cleaned the refugees began to move into the vacant houses.
The strain of these sudden developments flustered the city administration. They quickly moved all Muslims out of the city and attempted to transport them to the Pakistan border. To witness the scene I went to the big camp and bus station organized outside the city. It was not a sight of efficient organization. In some sections buses were loading and leaving regularly, but elsewhere Hindu and Sikh refugees from Pakistan were attacking the refuges with impunity. Hundreds were killed or wounded. I saw a woman being dragged out of a bus by two strong men and tried to intervene. The people nearby were in the grip of such terrible frenzy they turned on me and drove me away.
The city reeked with the stink of rotting dead bodies. Volunteers were called to transport them to a river about 15 kilometers away. I offered my help and witnessed scenes whose memory even to this day makes my hair stand.