ISIS Flags in Srinagar: Govt Orders Prosecution of 9 Srinagar Youth

Srinagar: Notwithstanding its continuous denial on Daesh (ISIS) presence in Jammu and Kashmir, the state government has silently ordered prosecution of nine youths from Srinagar for raising Daesh flag in Jamia Masjid three years ago.   

The flag was hoisted in the premises of historic Jamia Masjid on 17 October 2014 following which police registered an FIR (No. 92/2014) under section 13 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 in police station Nowhatta here. 

State’s Home department headed by Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said that the investigation have revealed nine persons, mainly from Old Srinagar, were involved. They have been identified as Sajad Ahmad Gilkar son of Nazir Ahmad of Pandan Nowhatta, Auqib Ahmad Mir son of Abdul Rahman Mir of Wantpora Nowhatta, Yasir Maqbool Mir son of Mohammad Maqbool Mir of Alamgari Bazar Zadibal, Obaid Ali Bhat son of All Mohammad of Daribal Khanyar, Arshad Ahmad Sofi son of Abdul Majid of Chandpora Hawal, Hashim Farooq Mir son of Farooq Ahmad of Ikhrajpora Jawher Nagar, Arshad Ahmad Wani son of Mohammad Sadiq of Safakadal, Abrar Farooq Wani son of Farooq Ahmad of Baba Pora Saidakadal and Javid Ahmad Sofi son of Abdul Rashid of Baghi-Nand Singh Chattabal.

 Sajad Ahmad Gilkar has since been killed in an encounter by army.

“The Investigating Officer has established a prima-facie case against the accused persons under section 13 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 apart from other offences, reads an SRO issued by the Home Secretary. 

“After perusing the case diary, the relevant documents and also taking into consideration the observations and recommendations of the authority appointed under sub-section (2) of section 45 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, the state government is of the view that there is sufficient material and evidence available against the accused persons for their prosecution under the provisions of law,” it said and accorded sanction against the nine youths. 

When the flags surfaced, the then chief minister Omar Abdullah had downplayed it and had said that action had been taken against the "foolish youths" who displayed the flags.

"No groups of the ISIS are present (in J&K). Some foolish youths used the flags but that was it," Abdullah told the media men in New Delhi after meeting Indian home minister Rajnath Singh. 

“Unfortunately some channels have played up this issue unnecessarily but we have already taken action against the guilty," he had said.

 A New Delhi based news channel while quoting an unmanned top police officer “instruments of the security paraphernalia working in Kashmir suggest that ISIS entering into the Valley and functioning like it does is nothing but a fable.”

“It is not Syria. In Kashmir an organisation like ISIS coming up and working the way it does is just not possible. Let us not underestimate our grids,” the top police official was quoted as saying.  

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