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Hyderpora crackdown stalls Geelani press conference

Security forces cracked down on Hyderpora locality of Srinagar, where Geelani also lives, and conducted a search operation, reports Rashid Ahmad.

india Updated: Apr 30, 2007 21:38 IST
Rashid Ahmad
Rashid Ahmad

Security forces cracked down on Hyderpora locality of capital Srinagar on Monday and conducted a search operation. All the entry and exit routes were closed and none of the residents was allowed to move in or outside.

The house of Syed Ali Geelani, which falls in the locality, was also searched. Geelani was to address a press conference at 11am, which however could not take place as the police did not allow even media persons to move in. The operation continued till late in the afternoon.

A police officer present on spot said that the operation was launched after a tip off about the presence of terrorists in the locality. However, no one was arrested.

Geelani alleged that the operation was a mere pretence to keep media persons off him and condemned it as "unreasonable and undemocratic". "We were going to hold the meeting of our supreme advisory council, which was to follow by a press conference," Geelani, in a written statement, said later, "and the cordon and search operation was launched to thwart us from holding the meeting and press conference".

He described the search operation as "an attempt by the government in Delhi to suppress our voice. The arrest of our several leaders and police raids on the houses of other functionaries and supporters was a part of this mindset".

"Government of India has got frustrated by the massive participation of people in our public rally at I’d Gah on April 22, and they are now using unfair means to muzzle our voice," he said adding, "government of India should shun belligerence and rigidity on Kashmir and accept the ground realties".

"After 9/11 New Delhi had made some wrong calculations but the participation of people in our rally has belied those calculations. Our freedom struggle has taken a set direction and is emerging as an influential political movement," Geelani said and alleged, "government trying to bully us by putting restrictions on our movement".

He condemned the arrest of six leaders of Hurriyat Conference during a press conference on April 26. Describing their arrest as "dictatorial and authoritarian", Geelani asked for a general shutdown on May 5. He however urged people not to hold any protest demonstrations.

Reacting over BJP’s wrangle in parliament over his (Geelani’s) rally, Geelani alleged that BJP was a non-political communal organization, which wanted to attract voters in its favor by doing that. He told the government to reconstruct the mosque in Hari Parbat Fort within two months "or the people will build it on their own".

First Published: Apr 30, 2007 21:33 IST