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HindustanTimes Wed,17 Sep 2014

Gaza likely to overshadow Eid celebrations in Kashmir Valley

Peerzada Ashiq, Hindustan Times  Srinagar, July 28, 2014
First Published: 10:15 IST(28/7/2014) | Last Updated: 10:33 IST(28/7/2014)

Gaza is likely to overshadow the upcoming Eid-ul-Fitr celebrations in Kashmir Valley with separatists calling upon people to observe it with austerity and register peaceful protests.

The increasing number of civilian deaths in Israel’s action in Gaza, which has crossed 1000 mark, has dampened the Eid spirits in the Valley.

Hardline Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani has asked people to register 30-minute protest after the prayers of Eid, which is likely to fall on Tuesday or Wednesday, depending on the appearance of the moon.

“We are having an human heart and the dead bodies of the infants and children of Gaza are very painful for us and we consider it our duty to protest against these inhuman and beastly activities,” said Geelani. He also demanded the release of youth arrested for carrying out anti-Israel protests in south Kashmir’s Qoimoh area, where a youth was also killed in the security forces firing last week. “We demand immediate release of 17 youth who were detained in Qoimoh. People there protested against the killing of a student of the area. It was the natural reaction that is expected after such an incident occurs, but the police don’t allow the people to mourn on the dead bodies and it is becoming a dangerous trend here,” said Geelani while demanding release of all political prisoners.

He alleged that the Omar Abdullah government had broken all the previous records of mismanagement and his regime was proving to be the darkest period in the history of Kashmir.

Moderate Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq has called for Eid prayers at the historic Eidgah in Srinagar.

He also has asked people to express solidarity with Gaza. There is likelihood that he may not be allowed to lead the prayers. Since 2010, the authorities have disallowed such congregations where the Mirwaiz was scheduled to lead prayers at Eidgah. Anger is also brewing on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter and several groups are calling for the boycott of Israeli products on Eid. “How can a Muslim celebrate Eid when he sees his brethren been killed mercilessly in Gaza.

How can one forget faces of dead infants killed in Israeli bombing,” said Nazeer Ahmad on FB.

Hundreds of gory pictures emerging from Gaza are doing rounds on the social networking sites in the Valley, fuelling anger and protests.

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