Mirwaiz Says, Govt. At War With Old City

Meeting of all stakeholders to be held on 18th Nov to chalk response

SRINAGAR:  The leader of the moderate faction of the Hurriyet Conference, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, Thursday accused the government of adopting a policy of revenge and vendetta against the entire population of the old city and threatened to launch a coordinated movement to counter it.  

Addressing a press conference at his Nigeen residence, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq cautioned authorities against the continuation of this policy and threatened to launch a mass movement “if the repressive policy was not put to an end”.

Elaborating upon his plans to hold a meeting of a cross section of society over this issue and formulating a new strategy, the Mirwaiz said, “We are convening an important meeting at Mirwaiz Manzil Rajouri Kadal on November 18. All stakeholders including, pro-freedom leadership, academics, Ulema, lawyers, civil society activists, student leaders are invited; the meeting is aimed at chalking out a disciplined stratagem to tackle the oppressive approach adopted by the incumbent Indian government in Jammu and Kashmir,” Mirwaiz told reporters.

Alleging that the state had been converted into a police state and explicating upon a larger role for the people against the approach of the state, the Mirwaiz said “All the issues confronting people of Kashmir will be thoroughly discussed in the meeting as people have a great role to play. We don’t want to create any law and order problem neither are we interested in taking law of the land in our hands but if we are choked then we will be forced to come on the roads.”

Mirwaiz asserted that the government has adopted a policy of revenge against people particularly against old city populace who have been caged and deprived of essential commodities.

Expressing and giving vent to the problems faced by people in the Old City on a daily basis, the Mirwaiz said, “On every small pretext Govt. clamps restrictions on the public movement here. Old city people have been deprived of medicines, food, milk and other essential commodities in the wake of undeclared curfews and restrictions only for supporting pro-freedom programs. Peoples businesses too are made to suffer, resulting in their economic deprivation”. The aim, according to the Mirwaiz,  was to keep people economically deprived and dependent so that they lose focus on the “resistance movement”.

Pointing out to and insinuating a punitive policy adopted by the state, the Mirwaiz said, “ It seems that the government has adopted revenge policy against people”, the Mirwaiz stated. He also said the so-called state government instead of solving the problems of the people had itself become a big problem for the people of Kashmir.

Referring to the killing of Gowhar Nazir , Hurriyat (M) Chairman claimed, “that the killing of an engineering student Gowhar Nazir was not an isolated incident of its kind as thousands of youth have so far become target of teargas shells, pallets and pepper guns in Kashmir. “The excessive use of non-lethal weapons has also become the source of many diseases in Kashmir”, the Mirwaiz added. 

Terming it as state-sponsored terrorism, the Mirwaiz said,  “oppression and suppression was at an all time high in Jammu Kashmir and this government in the state had assumed powers to push Hindutva agenda.

Labeling the government’s approach as vindictive and denigrating and pooh poohing government probes,  the Mirwaiz said that, “This government has collapsed and has confined its responsibilities to probes only which are nothing but mere eyewash to buy time”.

Referring to arrests made by police under different pretexts, the Hurriyat(M) Chairman asserted that, “an organised mafia was working under the very nose of the police that first arrest children and youth and then demand ransom money from their parents, which proves no such thing as a government exists in Jammu Kashmir”.

 Implying hypocrisy and double standards on part of the Government, Hurriyat (M) Chairman said: This was an era of dictatorship and blamed the so-called government on the one had raises slogans of Jamhuriyat (Democracy), Kashmiriyat (Kashmiri ethos), and Insaniyat (Humanity) and announcing economically package for making people happy and on the other hand, it gives Indian forces a free hand to hold people at gun point”.

Pointing out to the misuse of Acts like the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), ‘the Mirwaiz said,  “AFSPA and other black laws were being used to cow down the people and suppress them in such a way that they are not even allowed to participate in the funeral prayers and express sympathy with their loved ones who are killed by the Indian forces”

Pointing out a contradiction, the Mirwaiz also asserted  that while militancy related activities have reduced to great extent in Kashmir but no steps have been taken to reduce the military footprint so far.

Revisiting the Kashmir conflict in view of Modi’s financial package, the Mirwaiz said, “  Kashmir issue is not based on packages but is a political issue which must be resolved politically keeping in consideration the sentiments of the people”.

The Mirwaiz added that curbing the religious, political and social activities of the resistance leaders was a state policy now and human rights violations were at an all-time high.

In a pointed reference and criticism of the PDP- BJP coalition government, the Mirwaiz said, “ ever since the day PDP and BJP government assumed power in Jammu Kashmir, it seems that a war has been waged against  Kashmiris at the government level”. Extending his critique to the BJP Government at the Centre, and accusing it of hubris, Mirwaiz Omer said, “ the Narendra Modi led-government was suffering from the arrogance of power on Kashmir issue and instead of approaching the issue through dialogue was trying to push the issue under the carpet by using its military might and oppressive and suppressive tactics”.


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