Srinagar: Police on Tuesday placed Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq under house arrest, a day before the pro-freedom amalgam was scheduled to hold a rally at Martrys’ graveyard Eidgah to mark the death anniversaries of Mirwaiz Mohammad Farooq and Abdul Gani Lone.
Reports said a posse of policemen sealed the residence of Mirwaiz at Nigeen here and told him that he had been put under house arrest.
Mirwaiz was scheduled to lead a rally of workers of his Awami Action Committee at the historic Mirwaiz Manzil in connection with the ‘Hafta Shuhada’ programme.
Mirwaiz later addressed his supporters over the telephone. He said the “basic aim of our struggle was a lasting solution of Kashmir issue and protection of the sacrifices made by our great leaders and people for the cause.”
The Hurriyat chairman said that Kashmiris have faced innumerable sufferings for past many decades. “Today when the nation wants to pay tributes to its martyrs, the leaders, activists and people are stopped by putting them in jails or under house arrest and imposing restrictions,” he said, adding that “this standard practice of repression by the state authorities can in no way weaken the resolve of people rather it strengthens it further.”
Mirwaiz said only the resolution of Kashmir issue can guarantee permanent peace and security to the entire south Asia He said that result-oriented tripartite dialogue between India, Pakistan and Kashmiri resistance leadership is the only medium to solve the issue once and for all.
“Now when a new government is taking charge in India, we hope this leadership will bring a change in its policy towards Kashmir and demonstrate a realistic approach to find a lasting solution to the Kashmir issue through meaningful measures,” the Mirwaiz said addressing a workers’ rally at the Awami Action Committee (AAC) headquarters here.
He said that time has come that India “shuns its policy of obduracy” and start a meaningful dialogue with the people of Kashmir and Pakistan.
Appealing people to assemble at Eidgah and observe complete strike on May 21, Mirwaiz said that people should march towards the Martyrs’ graveyard to “pay tributes to the martyrs’ and show their complete resolve towards freedom struggle.”
During the rally senior AAC leaders including GN Zaki, Nazir Ahmad Ronga, Mohammad Shafi Khan, Prof HU Jeelani, DR Sharma, Abdul Gani Shah, and representatives of the party from various districts, addressed the gathering. A resolution was also passed on the occasion.
Later a rally of AAC workers and activists first marched from Mirwaiz Manzil to the Martyrs’ graveyard and later went to the residence of the Hurriyat chairman at Nigeen, demanding lifting of restrictions on his movement. They raised slogans in favour of azadi and Islam, reports said.
Meanwhile, a Hurriyat spokesman has condemned the government crackdown on Hurriyat leaders and activists in view of the Eidgah ‘chalo’ programme. The spokesman condemned the house arrest of senior Hurriyat leaders, advocate Shahid-ul-Islam, Zaffar Akbar Bhat and Syed Saleem Geelani and detention of Mushtaq Ahmed Sofi and other leaders and flayed the authorities for raiding the houses of senior leaders including Javaid Ahmad Mir, Hilal Ahmad War and other party activists.