SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) on Thursday organised rallies in Kashmir and several countries of the world to observe the 32nd execution anniversary of its co-founder Maqbool Bhat, who was hanged and buried in New Delhi’s Tihar jail in 1984.
The party said a rally was held at Bhat’s ancestral village Trehgam, Kupwara, while a candle-light march was also held in the north Kashmir’s village the last night.
Hundreds of people participated in the events and raised slogans in favour of Bhat, it said.
In his message, JKLF’s chairman, Muhammad Yasin Malik, who has been languishing in jail for the last many days, said: “The personalities like father of Kashmiri nation Muhammad Maqbool Butt are glory for nations. People like these changes the course of history through their struggle and sacrifices and become immortal.”
He said Bhat was alive as “he lives in our hearts and minds”.
According to JKLF, a programme was held in Giigit Baltistan. It was presided over by JKLF’s supreme chief, Aman ullah Khan, it said, adding that hundreds of JKLF workers, local political party representatives, and intellectuals spoke on the occasion.
Addressing the participants, Khan, according to the statement, said: “The struggle and sacrifices of Maqbool Butt are a golden chapter of our history. Maqbool was a true and faithful son of the soil, whose passion for freedom was and remains unparallel.”
The JKLF said protests, rallies, and seminars were held across Pakistan including at Islamabad, Karachi, and in Pakistan-administered Kashmir’s several areas like Muzzafarbad, Kotli, Mirpur, Tattapani, and Bagh.
The participants, it said, raised the demand for return of Bhat’s mortal remains.
The party said that Bhat’s anniversary was also observed in the United Kingdom, with JKLF’s diplomatic bureau chief, Prof Raja Zaffar Khan, leading a protest demonstration outside the Indian High Commission’s office at London.
A memorandum signed by more than 60 MP’s of British parliament was presented to the Indian High Commission, demanding return of Bhat’s mortal remains, it said. A Volley Ball tournament was held in Stoke, UK, on the eve of Bhat’s anniversary, JKLF said, adding that programmes were held in many cities of Saudi Arabia. More events will be held in Riyadh, UAE, Qatar, Oman, Hong Kong, France, Belgium, Lahore, and parts of UK in the coming days.