Restrictions in Srinagar to Prevent Funeral Prayers for JKLF Founder Amanullah Khan
SRINAGAR: Authorities in Kashmir Wednesday imposed curfew-like restrictions in parts of Srinagar to disallow funeral prayers in-absentia of the JKLF founder, Amanullah Khan, who died in Pakistan on Tuesday.
Officials said restrictions have enforced in and around the city centre Lal Chowk and parts of old city after the JKLF chief, Yasin Malik, called for funeral prayers in absentia for Khan who succumbed at a hospital in Rawalpindi following an asthma attack.
All the separatist leaders including Malik, veteran Hurriyat leader, Syed Ali Geelani, JKLF leader Javaid Ahmad Mir, moderate Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and JKNF chief, Nayeem Khan among others, have been put under house arrest ahead of the funeral prayers.
Advocate Shahid-ul-Islam said Mirwaiz was scheduled to head a meeting of the Hurriyat and participate in the proposed funeral prayers at Lal Chowk. "The police disallowed him from leaving the residence," Islam said.
Earlier, Malik was arrested and lodged in Kothibagh police station to foil the prayers. “Ahead of Gayibana Nimaz-e-Jinaza for JKLF supreme leader Jenab Aman Ullah Khan ,Chairman JKLF Muhammad Yasin Malik has been arrested by police and curfew has been clamped in Lal Chowk, Maisuma, Kokerbazar, Kothibagh, Abi Guzar, Court road and other adjacent areas,” a JKLF spokesman.
He said all roads leading to Lal Chowk have been sealed by barricades and concertina wire to prevent people from holding the prayers. According to witnesses, shops, educational institutions and other businesses remained closed in these areas with massive traffic jams reported on the outskirts of the summer capital.
Earlier, the death of Khan was widely condoled by political parties cutting across ideological divides in Kashmir. Yasin Malik termed the death as “big loss" for the resistance camp. "He invested his entire life for the Kashmir cause. There can be no second Amanullah Khan. There can be no second person like him,” said Malik.
National Conference President Dr Farooq Abdullah and working president Omar Abdullah also condoled the demise of Khan. “Praying for peace to the departed soul, Dr. Farooq Abdullah and Mr. Omar Abdullah have extended their heartfelt condolences to Mr. Khan’s family in their hour of grief and loss,” said a spokesman.
The death was also condoled by other mainstream leaders, Geelani-led Hurriyat, civil society, Kashmir Bar, Jamaat-i-Islami, among other political and social groups.