SRINAGAR – Several towns in North Kashmirs Kupwara district Saturday observed complete shutdown to protest the desecration of a Jamia Masjid and the holy Quran in a village last night.
According to reports, people of Bicharwari in Langate area of the district were shocked this morning to see the furnishings, including flooring and curtains, of the local Jamia Majid placed on its Hammam and set ablaze and several copies holy Quran lying scattered outside. The incident had taken place during the preceding night.
Soon after thousands of people, including those from nearby villages, took to streets and staged protest demonstrations against what they termed as the third such incident in the area during recent times.
Accusing the government of nonchalance in such a sensitive and grave issue, the protesters blamed police of laxity and failure to bring the culprits to justice. The earlier incidents had taken place at Palapora and Udipora.
Following an assurance by administration and police officials to nab all those involved in the heinous crime, the protesters dispersed peacefully, after warning the administration of massive demonstrations if those responsible were not nabbed immediately.
Reports said all shops, commercial establishments, government and private offices and institutions, in the entire area, including Langate, Supernaghama, Qaziabad, Kralgund and adjoining villages, remained closed for the day while the movement of vehicular traffic was also disrupted.
Police have registered a case vide FIR 56/2012 under section 436, 511, 295/RPC and launched investigation. However, nobody had been arrested so far.
Meanwhile, expressed grave concern over the incident, Hurriyat Conference (G) chairman, Syed Ali Shah Geelani, said the acts of sacrilege and desecration were taking place at regular intervals and had assumed the import of a serious issue.
Described the role of police as highly condemnable and dubious, he said the force was hyperactive in arresting innocent Islamists and pro-freedom activists but had miserably failed to achieve any breakthrough in nabbing those involved in acts of desecration and sacrilege.
Earlier, he said, such incidents had taken place at Narbal, Sozeth and Bandipore, but the police had failed to identify and book the criminals as it did not take these acts seriously. The hand of agencies in these acts cannot be ruled out because New Delhi spares no attempt to create chaos and anarchy here, he said, adding its main target was the freedom struggle of Kashmiri people and to push it into the margins, it was attempted to create uncertainty in the state. (KNS)
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