Prayers in Jamia Masjid after 6 weeks
Mirwaiz Accuses Abdullahs Of Suppressing Kashmiris
ARIF SHAFI WANI
Srinagar, Aug 13: All roads led to the historic Jamia Masjid here on Friday as thousands of people offered congregational prayers there after six weeks of continuous restrictions.
The call for Jamia Chalo was given by Hurriyat Conference (M) Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq who had accused the Government of snatching religious rights of Kashmiris and urged people to defy curfew and offer prayers at the the central Masjid.
Though the authorities had lifted restrictions in the Old City today, people fought pitched battles with troopers and policemen while marching in a massive procession towards the Jamia Masjid.
From the pulpit of the Masjid, Mirwaiz, who was released from house arrest after over a month, led special prayers for freedom and offered prayers in absentia for the 53 youth and teenagers who were killed in past over two months. People could not control their emotions and continuously chanted ‘Hum Kya Chahtay Aazadi (We want freedom).’
“We won’t let the sacrifices of over one lakh Kashmiris to go waste. The seven lakh Indian troopers can’t quell our movement as we are ready to sacrifice our lives for sacred cause,” Mirwaiz said as pro-freedom slogans reverberated in the Jamia Masjid.
Mirwaiz, who is also the Valley’s chief cleric, said the Government had deliberately prevented prayers at Jamia Masjid for past six consecutive Fridays. He said Jamia Masjid has been the central stage of aspirations of Kashmiris for past over 300 years.
“The Dogras and Sikhs closed the Jamia Masjid during their regimes to suppress the sentiments of Kashmiris. Despite being a Muslim majority state, now the present regime has been snatching our religious rights. This is conspiracy to weaken our just cause. Jamia Masjid represents the aspirations of Kashmiris. We are ready to sacrifice our lives for protecting our religious and fundamental rights,” Mirwaiz said.
Reacting to the statement of Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, Mirwaiz said peace can’t be restored in the Valley till the killings of innocents continue and aspirations of Kashmiris were fulfilled.
He said if New Delhi was serious to restore peace, it should unconditionally accept the conglomerate’s conditions including withdrawal of troops from civilian areas, revocation of AFSPA and release all political prisoners and youth.
Mirwaiz also rejected economic packages, jobs and autonomy as solution to Kashmir dispute. “No solution is acceptable to Kashmiris other than freedom. Kashmiris have not been laying their lives for so-called autonomy or economic packages. Kashmiris have taken to streets. The writing on the wall is clear and further delay in resolution of the dispute can have serious repercussions,” he said. However he maintained that Kashmir was a trilateral issue which has to be resolved by India, Pakistan and Kashmiris in its historical perspective.
Mirwaiz accused the Abdullah family of suppressing the sentiments of Kashmiris. “The Abdullahs have always helped New Delhi when it was on the verge of losing Kashmir. After the Sheikh-Indira and Farooq-Rajiv accords, the family has again extended support to New Delhi to crush the ongoing resistance movement,” he said as people reciprocated by shouting “we won’t allow sell-out of martyrs’ blood.”
Mirwaiz urged people to continue the peaceful protests and carry the conglomerate’s civil disobedience program to other districts. “Those who are of the opinion that the protests will calm down during Ramadan are living in a fool’s paradise. In this holy month which is full of blessings, let us resolve to intensify the movement for self-determination.”
Mirwaiz appealed the Chairman of Hurriyat (G) Syed Ali Shah Geelani who is spearheading the ‘Quit Jammu Kashmir movement’ not to give separate program on Fridays to allow the people to offer congregational prayers.
Mirwaiz urged people to march to Naqshband Sahib in Old City on Saturday. He said that Jamat-ul-Vida will be observed as Kashmir Day to renew pledge for taking the movement to its logical conclusion.
Urging the people to observe Eid with austerity in view of the civilian killings, he said on the day main prayers will be held at Eidgah.
Lastupdate on : Fri, 13 Aug 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 13 Aug 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 14 Aug 2010 00:00:00 IST
- MORE FROM FRONTPAGE
Srinagar, Aug 13: Hilal Ahmad Rather, 22, of Jablipora Bijbehara, who received two bullets fired by paramilitary CRPF troopers on August 1 and is battling for life in the ward no.16-A of SMHS hospital More
SYED AMJAD SHAH
Jammu, Aug 13: Police have intensified night patrol and Naka checking across the Jammu city and its outskirts, including sensitive places like airport railway station and bus stand ahead of More
- South Asia