Geelani To Offer Eid Prayer At Hazratbal

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Warns Of Grave Consequences If Siege At His House Not Lifted

Srinagar – Hurriyat Conference (G) chairman, Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Thursday announced he would offer Eid-ul-Azha prayers at Dargah Asar-e-Sharif Hazratbal on Saturday warning the government of “grave consequences” if the police siege around his residence at Hyderpora was not lifted immediately.

“Geelani will offer Eid prayers at Dargah Hazratbal and also address the congregation on the occasion in which he will shed light on the prevailing situation in the state,” Hurriyat Conference (G) spokesman, Ayyaz Akbar, said in a statement.

He said Geelani had earlier intended to offer Eid-ul-Fitr prayers but was prevented by the administration to do so. He warned of grave consequences if the police siege around Geelani’s house was not lifted.

“Keeping Geelani under continued house arrest is not only a serious human rights violation but tantamount to interference in religious affairs as well,” Ayyaz said, adding the Hurriyat chairman had been allowed to offer Friday only once this year and prevented from joining congregational prayers on the Eid-ul-Fitr as also all other Fridays.

If the government and its administration did not refrain from its approach this time, Ayyaz said, it would be assumed that it had accepted the defeat being incapable of fighting the Hurriyat (G) chairman politically.  “Even as the government may impose restrictions on Geelani’s movement, it cannot prevent his ideas and messages from reaching the masses,” he said.

Hurriyat spokesman said keeping Geelani under continued house arrest and even preventing him from offering prayers was a gross violation of his human and religious rights which could not be tolerated any longer.  “An individual in under house arrest for around two years past without any judicial or administrative order,” he lamented, expressing surprise over the occasional police claims that Geelani was a free man and could go anywhere.

Describing Omar Abdullah and his henchmen as “cowards and timid,” Ayyaz said a single man’s presence among the people would make them apprehensive of losing their power. “Geelani’s continued house arrest is making the state government’s position ridiculous by the day and even exposing those who claim to be representatives of the people,” he said, adding they should not been afraid of Geelani’s political activities in case they were confident about their claim.

Ayyaz said by fighting the Hurriyat (G) chairman politically, Omar and his government could vindicate their democratic claims. “Instead, they impose restrictions on the movement of the representative of popular aspirations and are themselves surrounded by an elaborate security apparatus,” he said.

Ayyaz said a resolution would circulated among all the mosques across the valley for people’s endorsement during Eid prayers.

Condemning army’s raid at the Hyderbeg residence of Hurriyat activist, Hilal Ahmad, the Hurriyat spokesman said Geelani’s autobiography, Wullar key kinare, had been seized during the operation.  (KNS)

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