Srinagar: Resistance leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik in a joint statement on Sunday extended the protest call by four days till Friday, July 29. They announced a protest programme that on Monday asked people to move in large numbers towards south Kashmir’s Islamabad district to participate in a rally to be held at the Lal Chowk there after afternoon prayers. On Tuesday, they asked for a complete shutdown till 2 pm after which markets should open to allow people to purchase essential commodities. In the evening between 8pm and 9pm, a complete blackout by switching off lights was called for. On Wednesday, the resistance leadership and people would move towards Kulgam district where tributes would be paid to martyrs of Kulgam. On Thursday, a complete shutdown will be observed and peaceful protests will be held by people in their local areas. In the evening between 8pm and 9pm a complete blackout should be observed .On Friday, besides observing a complete shutdown, people from every village and town should come to the Jamia Masjid Srinagar to pay tributes to all the martyrs.
In their statement the pro-freedom leaders reiterated that the people’s struggle for freedom and justice was started in 1931 against the autocratic rule of the Dogra king. “Unfortunately for the people of J&K, when the subcontinent gained freedom, the yoke of oppression passed on from an oppressive autocrat to oppressive ‘democrats’,” they said.
The leadership said that “Our struggle for freedom like all freedom struggles in the world is both indigenous and sacred. It has been kept alive by the tremendous sacrifices, sufferings, hardships, and perseverance of the brave people of the state over the past nine decades. The amount of oppression that the people of the state are routinely subject to at the hands of the oppressor and its agencies especially the armed forces is among the most brutal in modern history. The killing of more than 50 civilians by the forces, blinding of more than 150, injuring of more than 3,000 with impunity and unaccountability in the course of two weeks is a blot on the face of humanity. The country which executes such barbarism prides itself in being the world’s largest democracy.”
The leadership said that India’s propaganda that the current revolt is sponsored and happening at the behest of an external power is so worn-out and half-witted that it does not even warrant a response. “The attempt to hoodwink the people of India and the international community by such hogwash is simply deplorable,” the leaders said. “If India wants an end to hatred and hostility in the region, it should accept the reality of the Kashmir dispute and address it in accordance with the aspirations and rights of the people of Jammu & Kashmir.”