The Friday Fracas: ‘Don’t Deploy Forces Around Jamia Masjid,’ says Geelani

SRINAGAR: Strongly condemning the alleged desecration of the historic Jamia Masjidby police, Hurriyat Conference (G) chairman Syed Ali Geelani Saturday said that this historic Masjid is a “strong fort of the resistance movement of Kashmir and the government is targeting this place under a well-planned manner”.

Terming the shutdown call of the traders to protest this desecration as “legitimate and right”, Geelani said, “when atrocities crossover the limits, then protest is the only option left with the subjugated people.”

The Hurriyat Chairperson strongly condemned the thrashing and beating of the shopkeepers of the Jamia Market and the adjacent areas by the police and CRPF and said, “Friday is an important and sacred day for the Muslims all over the world and this day the people in large numbers participate in the congregational prayers in the Jamia Masjid but this thing is beyond understanding of anyone that why on this day a large number of police and CRPF personals are being deployed in this area. A war like situation is created in the Jamia Masjid area from early Friday mornings and every lane, by-lanes and every Chowk is occupied by the armed men on this day.”

Geelani added, “these steps are taken despite that the Kashmiris particularly the youth do not like the presence of forces around them and these forces are being considered as a tool of the forced occupation here.”

Demanding non-deployment of the forces in the Jamia Masjid area on Fridays, Geelani said, “these forces have martyred hundreds of innocent and unarmed youths and students of Kashmir in the years 2008 and 2010 so their presence provoke the youth and it is not any surprising or extraordinary issue.”

Malik Visits Jamia Masjid

Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chief, Muhammad Yasin Malik, visited Jamia Masjid on Saturday and expressed solidarity with the residents of the area.

“The reign of terror unleashed throughout Kashmir valley especially in Sher-e-Khas (Downtown) Srinagar is worst kind of dictatorship. Firing tear gas shelling inside Jamia Masjid, punishing the traders and shopkeepers of Jamia and Nowhatta, vandalizing and ransacking their business establishments and shops and terrorizing youth is highly condemnable,” Malik said while addressing traders, youth and other people who are on a protest sit-in in front of Jamia Masjid Srinagar.

Malik, along with JKLF leaders including Sheikh Abdul Rashid, Mushtaq Ahmad Khan, Basher Kashmiri and Muhammad Amin Magloo joined Dharna demonstration.

Strongly condemning the shelling inside Jamia Masjid, desecrating the holy mosque, vandalizing Jamia market, ransacking shops and thus inflicting traders with huge losses, Malik said, “Kashmir has today been turned into a police state where police and forces are actual rulers. Youth belonging to Sher-e-Khas have been terrorized by police and forces, nocturnal raids on their residences and humiliating their kith and kin have become the order of the day.” “By unleashing this terror, so-called rulers are actually pushing youth to the wall and hence are promoting a worst kind of violence.”

He condemned “this unilateral state sponsored violence”, and said, “rulers who on daily basis are propagating battle of ideas have given police enormous powers and they with impunity are unleashing every kind of terror on common people of Kashmir.”

The statement said Malik assured traders, youth and other people “of every support” and said, “we stand by them in this hour of need.”

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