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Friday, Dec 06, 2019

Agitation in J&K: All roads lead to Pampore

Pakistan may not be the first choice of many people in Kashmir. But ever since the shrine row erupted, pro-Pak slogans are being heard in Kashmir more often, reports Rashid Ahmad.

india Updated: Aug 17, 2008 00:39 IST
Rashid Ahmad
Rashid Ahmad
Hindustan Times

The youngster clambered up a telecommunication tower and hoisted a green flag as onlookers shouted pro-Pakistan slogans during a protest in Pampore on Saturday.

As chairman of hardline faction of the Hurriyat Conference, Syed Ali Geelani shouted ‘Jeevay Jeevay Pakistan’, the crowd responded in unison.

Soon, another youth followed suit, this time with a genuine Pakistani flag.

Pakistan may not be the first choice of many people in Kashmir. But ever since the shrine board land row erupted, pro-Pakistan slogans are being heard in Kashmir more often.

The protesters swirled in circles, shouting slogans in a low-pitched tone, hands clapping in sync. The pitch rose gradually and reached a crescendo as the beat of clapping became rapid, the slogan shouting rising with the tempo.

“More than love for Pakistan, it is anger against India that makes people raise pro-Pakistan slogans,” said Tahir Mohiuddin, editor ‘Chattan” an Urdu weekly.

“You might have observed that pro-Pak slogans are mostly raised near CRPF and army bunkers and positions. That reveals the state of mind of the slogan shouters,” added Mohiuddin.

“No election can resolve the Kashmir issue,” said Chairman of the moderate faction of the Hurriyat Conference Mirwaiz Umer Farooq said on Saturday at a gathering on the fourth day ceremony of slain Hurriyat leader Sheikh Abdul Aziz.

Chairman of the hardline faction of the Hurriyat Conference Syed Ali Shah Geelani said, “Our struggle is for the right to self-determination. We will continue it until we achieve our goal.”

On Independence Day on Friday, a crowd of around 20,000 people gathered in Srinagar’s historic Lal Chowk and hoisted green flags atop Ghanta Ghar (Clock Tower).

Earlier in the day, the venue had witnessed the hoisting of the Indian flag. A unit of CRPF deployed in Lal Chowk had hoisted the flag on the tower to mark the Independence Day celebrations.

But the flag had been removed by the unit members immediately after it was hoisted.