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J&K govt wary to allow Mirwaiz observe his father's death anniversary

india Updated: May 20, 2013 17:57 IST
Ashiq Hussain
Ashiq Hussain
Hindustan Times
J&K government

It seems the government of Jammu and Kashmir has decided against allowing moderate separatist Mirwaiz Umar Farooq to commemorate death anniversary of his father Mirwaiz Mohammad Farooq on May 21.

While the young separatist leader has called a shutdown urging people to march towards Martyr's graveyard at Eidgah for a rally, the authorities - like for the previous two occasions - have put him under house arrest.

Mirwaiz's father and chief cleric of Jamia Masjid, Mirwaiz Mohammad Farooq, was killed by unidentified assailants on this day in 1990. While commemorating the day in 2002, another separatist leader Abdul Gani Lone was also shot dead on the same day at Eidgah.

On Sunday morning, a huge contingent of police swooped on Mirwaiz Umar's residence at Nigeen and restricted him to his home.

"For the time being Mirwaiz Umar will remain in his house," said Srinagar deputy commissioner, Farooq Ahmad Shah.

Last year, the government had also put severe restrictions on movement on people around Eidgah in old city.

However, this time there is uncertainty among people to ascertain whether there will be curfew or not.

"We won't be enforcing curfew or any restriction at all," Shah said.

However, local dailies quoted director general of police, Ashok Prasad, saying that the police will keep in mind the trend of previous years.

"We will not allow that the situation takes any ugly turn. Inimical elements can enter into the rally and can create trouble. We will not allow all that to happen," he said.

While telephonically addressing a seminar on Sunday, Mirwaiz took government head-on asserting that "house arrests, harassment of party workers and coercion was not going to quieten the freedom struggle".

"It was regrettable that government of India was speaking only in the language of force and was engaged in trampling the peaceful struggle of Kashmiris," Mirwaiz was quoted in a statement.