Parties unite to condemn forces’ ‘brutali’
SRINAGAR: Cutting across ideological barriers, both pro-freedom and pro-India parties and student organisations condemned the use of force against students on Monday even as state’s Mufti Azam said that “the life and dignity of our young and old is at stake”.
Students from Kashmir University and degree colleges across the valley, meanwhile, protested the “brutality” perpetrated by forces on students of Degree College Pulwama in south Kashmir on Saturday, which left 54 students injured.
Chairman Hurriyat Conference (G) Syed Ali Geelani, in a statement, expressed “deep concern” over the increasing use of “repressive” measures by forces against civilians and students alike. He said that Kashmiri people were facing “state terrorism”.
“There is simmering lava against state terrorism and excesses perpetrated by the government, army, and police. We won’t tolerate this,” Geelani said. He commended the student community for holding peaceful protests, yet condemning government forces for use of “brute force” against them. “They (forces) are unnecessarily targeting the student community. People are pursuing their right to self-determination and there is no justification for bullying and highhandedness”. Blaming authorities in Delhi for targeting Kashmir’s economy & education, Geelani said, “We are keeping a close eye on the situation and will take measures to check these conspiracies”.
Chairman Hurriyat Conference (M) Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, in a statement, strongly denounced the use of “savage” force against students and termed it “worst form of state terrorism”.
“The barbaric raj of Indian forces and police is prevalent in Kashmir to the extent that troopers and police did not even spare the protesting students as if they were seeking revenge from the students,” Mirwaiz said.
“The anguish of students is understandable given the repression and barbarity of the state that they are witnessing around them.”
Mirwaiz asked students to remain cautious and take care of themselves as “no restraint or disciplined response can be expected from the unbridled forces who have been given a free hand to kill and maim Kashmiris under any pretext”.
Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman Muhammad Yasin Malik regarded the action against students as “brutal use of force” and termed it “highhandedness and suppression” and “a testimony to the fact that Jammu Kashmir has been turned into a police state”.
In a statement, Malik, said, “SOG and CRPF along with Indian army crossed every limit of brutality at Pulwama Degree College and dozens of girls and boys were injured by police. Highhandedness of Police and army was evident through various videos on social media”.
He said “attacks” on colleges and schools and brutalising students is not acceptable to any civilised society and “today’s peaceful protest by students of Kashmir is a genuine, legal and democratic protest”. “This brutal use of force is a proof of the fact that Jammu Kashmir is a police state and that banning every peaceful activity is undemocratic”.
Shabir Ahmad Shah, chairman of Democratic Freedom Party (DFP), termed the excesses against students “unacceptable”, stating that “such awakening of youth is the sign of living nations”.
Shah condemned the teargas shelling on students and said “such measures will evoke serious repercussions”.
He said Kashmiri youth were “killed under a well-thought-out plan”. He condemned the killing of Sajad Hassan in Batamaloo saying “excessive force is used against people demanding their just rights’.
Chairperson of Dukhtaran-e-Millat (DeM), Syeda Aasiya Andrabi, strongly denounced the “use of brute force and repression by the occupying forces” against students across the Kashmir Valley.
“Due to the presence of these forces, Kashmir has become a very unsafe place to live. They brutalise our kids the way it suits them,” Andrabi said in a statement.
Jammu Kashmir National Front chairman, Nayeem Ahmad Khan said, “New Delhi and its local stooges should realise that Kashmiris are united and demand freedom from India in one voice”. He praised the student community for their “valour and resolve” and saying, “Freedom struggle has successfully transferred to new generation. India should read writing on the wall and desist from its illogical stance about Kashmir dispute,” Khan said, adding that “heckling of youth, tear gassing peaceful protesters and baton charging them is not acceptable to Kashmiris”.
Chairman JKLF (H) Javaid Ahmad Mir, while condemning the incidents accused the government of “fullfilling the aims of RSS in Kashmir”. “Brazenly beating students and killing innocent people on roads is a clear message to common Kashmiris that they are slaves of a large military power”.
Chairman Salvation Movement Zafar Akbar Bhat hailed the student community for their “commitment to freedom movement”. He said forces’ action against students is “unwanted and unjustified”.
‘State-sponsored terrorism’, says Mufti Azam
Mufti Nasir-Ul-Islam, Deputy Mufti Azam, said in a statement that “India has given its brutal forces license to kill unarmed innocent youth of Kashmir”.
Paying tributes to those killed by government forces, he said, “Such type of atrocities and state-sponsored terrorism could not prevent the people of Kashmir from their just struggle for securing the right of self-determination.”
Mufti Nasir said that targetting students is “utterly shameful” and it shows the “oppressive face of the so-called democracy”. He termed the killings that have occurred over the past week as “cold blooded murder”.
Government of India, he said, was “frustrated and is using all types of cruel methods to suppress Kashmiris’ freedom movement”.
Forces targeting edu instts: UJC
United Jihad Council chief Syed Salahudin has condemned the assault on college students saying forces are now “targeting” educational institutions. He said Pakistan should mount diplomatic pressure against new Delhi and raise the human rights violation (in Kashmir) to mobilise the world opinion against India.
In an e-mailed statement to local news agency KNS, UJC spokesman Syed Sadaqat Hussain quoted its chief saying, “Forces are now taking revenge as people of Kashmir have rejected the Indian occupation.”
“Assaulting youth in public and then circulating their videos, forced anti-Pakistan slogans, tying a youth to a jeep as human shield are all signs of the defeat of Indian forces,” he said.
Salahudin also paid tributes to students and civilians killed by government forces.
Govt following ‘draconian’
Doval Doctrine: NC, Congress
Pro-India parties National Conference (NC) and Congress decried the “ruthless use of force” against students across Kashmir and called the scenario “a proof that PDP-BJP government had authorised its forces to target unarmed civilians”.
In a joint statement issued from party headquarters, NC Provincial Spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar and YNC Provincial President Salman Ali Sagar said, “Government has declared an open war against students. The fact that hundreds of students were injured while protesting government’s silence on last week’s attack inside Pulwama college campus, and the current spate of killings, proves that forces have been authorised by the state government to maim and kill.” Calling attention to the huge number of injuries to students on Monday, the duo alleged that ruling coalition’s core policy for dealing with situation is the “draconian Doval Doctrine”. “Ever since Mehbooba Mufti took reins of the government in 2016, civilians have fallen to forces’ brutalities,” Dar said.
“What kind of security threat were these young girl students posing to the heavily armoured forces. In Kulgam only, at least 3 girls are critical and over 50 students have suffered injuries. Which police station was being set afire,” Dar asked, referring to the statements of chief minister Mehbooba Mufti where she had, according to the press statement, “justified the civilian killings”.
A war: ‘Pens vs Pellets and Books vs Bullets’
All Jammu and Kashmir Students Union (AJKSU) denounced the forces’ actions and termed the clashes as “a war between Pens vs Pellets and Books vs Bullets”.
AJKSU took out protest marches against the incident in Pulwama college. The student body alleged that protesting students “were attacked with teargas shells to scatter them”.
“Security Forces used tear smoke shells against protesting students at Srinagar, Shopian, Sopore, Anantnag and Kulgam and Baramulla college in which hundreds of students were injured,” a statement by the AJKSU said.
Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba Jammu and Kashmir (IJT), while strongly condemning the use of force against peaceful demonstrations of students across Kashmir on Monday, has expressed “complete solidarity” with the student community.
In a statement, the students’ body said, “No authority on earth has any legal right to bar students from expressing their viewpoint. The treatment meted out to students of Jammu and Kashmir has time and again been undemocratic and uncivilised in nature.”
Geelani condemns mysterious killings
Expressing his deep concern over mysterious killings in district Pulwama, Syed Ali Geelani said there is no justification for these killings.
“It is unfair and against humanity to kill a person for his specific ideology or affiliations,” Geelani said in a statement.
While denouncing the killings, Geelani said such killings will lead to chaos.
“Teachings of Islam assign extraordinary worth for human life and saving a human being is like saving the whole humanity,” Geelani said while terming the identity of those involved in these killings a ‘mystery’.