Hurriyat Leaders Not Allowed to Meet
SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir government foiled a meeting planned by the Hurriyat trio of Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik at the latter's residence.
The Hurriyat sources said the meeting was called at 3 pm yesterday to discuss the strategy in the wake of ongoing crisis but it was foiled after the authorities stopped the JKLF chief Malik outside Geelani's residence in Srinagar and denied him access.
Mirwaiz, the head of moderate Hurriyat and Kashmir's chief cleric who was shifted from a sub-jail to his residence in Srinagar to facilitate his meeting with the former union minister Yashwant Sinha-led delegation on October 24, was stopped by police from leaving his home.
“We strongly condemn this cowardice and unlawful action by puppet government. It has once again proven that this ruthless regime is nothing but a stooge in the hands of Delhi durbar,” a statement issued by Geelani said.
“This government is least concerned about the sufferings of the people as every minor and major issue is directly handled by government of India,” it added.
The meeting was the first get together of the top separatist leaders after the civil uprising erupted in Kashmir following the killing of Hizb commander Burhan Wani in an encounter with forces in Kokernag village on July 8.
"By foiling the meeting, the government has made it clear that it is not concerned about the people of J&K and only wants to please their masters in Delhi. They (delegation members) had promised to give us political space but instead we are not allowed to even meet each other," Mirwaiz said.
Meanwhile, at least 40 civilians were wounded, two of them critically, when clashes broke out between the police and paramilitary troopers and residents of Anchar locality in the capital Srinagar against the ongoing raids to nab the freedom protesters.
Police and paramilitary laid a siege around Anchar area of Soura in capital city yesterday morning, reportedly to arrest youths who have been participating in freedom protests that have been going on since the killing of Burhan Wani on July 8.
Locals alleged that the forces, looking for some alleged stone-pelters, vandalised cars, shops and houses in the area, angering the residents who hit the roads and started a peaceful protest demonstration against the excesses.
However, the situation turned ugly when the forces fired teargas and pellets to disperse the demonstration, sparking violent clashes in the area with even women participating in pelting stones at the forces.
Amid anti-India and pro-freedom sloganeering by the women, the youths pelted stones at the forces who has gained entry into the interiors of the locality. Locals alleged that the forces also shelled a mosque where residents had taken refuge to escape 'atrocities'. The clashes continued in the area throughout the day.
The clashes, which resulted in injuries to at least 35 police and paramilitary personnel, including a senior police officer, spread to adjoining localities as well as parts of south Kashmir as false rumours of a youth getting killed gained currency. A 13-year-old girl reportedly suffered pellet injuries in one of the protests in Shopian district, sources said.
Authorities have launched a sweeping crackdown to control freedom protests in the Valley with at least 7000 people arrested or detained while over 500 of them have been booked under the draconian Public Safety Act.
(Cover Photograph BASIT ZARGAR: clashes in Soura area of Srinagar. Paramilitary and police cordoned area, fired PAVA shells and pellet gun according to local sources)