Srinagar: Early Wednesday morning, the government put Mirwaiz Umar Farooq under house arrest and later arrested Yasin Malik, as part of a crackdown on the resistance camp ahead of a seminar called at Syed Ali Geelani’s Hyderpora residence-cum-office on Thursday. The seminar was called by the Geelani-led Hurriyat Conference to mark January 5, when the United Nations in 1948 passed a resolution for Kashmir to be given the right to self-determination.
Hurriyat Conference (G) spokesperson Gulzar Ahmad Gulzar said that police raided houses of several activists and senior members and lodged them in various police stations since Tuesday night. “I along with Moulvi Bashir Ahmad were arrested from our houses late on Tuesday. We have been lodged in police station Shergadi,” Gulzar told this newspaper over phone. “Muhammad Yaseen Attai, Syed Imtiyaz Hyder and Gulzar Ahmad Bhat have been detained in police station Budgam after they were arrested from their houses on Tuesday night,” he said.
He said he had “no idea of (what had happened to) other Hurriyat Conference activists”.
Gulzar said that the seminar was scheduled to be held on Thursday “because we could not do it on Friday –January 5”.
“The seminar was titled, ‘Resolution of Kashmir Dispute in The Light of Right to Self Determination’,” he said.
Gulzar said that Geelani and his deputy Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai remain under continuous house detention at their Hyderpora and Baghat residences, respectively.
“We had invited Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik to the seminar,” he said, “besides reputed journalists, lawyers and intellectuals.”
The Mirwaiz slammed the government for detaining him again inside his residence. “After three days, again put under #HouseArrest!” he wrote on Twitter.
Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Mohammad Yasin Malik was arrested from his Abi Guzar office and sent to Central Jail Srinagar. Malik said in a statement that “arresting people, placing them under house arrest, clamping curfews and restrictions has become the order of the day. The so-called rulers propagated sugar-coated slogans like healing touch, battle of ideas, and no bullet but talks, and tried to deceive people by these catchphrases. Irony is that despite killing hundreds, injuring thousands, snatching eyesight of thousands, vandalising properties worth billions, torturing men, women and children by holding crackdowns during chilling cold weather, especially in south Kashmir, arresting, house arresting and torturing people including resistance leadership, choking every little space on peaceful political activities and hence turning Kashmir into a police state, these rulers have not changed their hypocritical politics and are shamelessly seen raising same catchy slogans in order to deceive and defeat people.”