Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) on Thursday called for a boycott of upcoming panchayat elections in Jammu and Kashmir, saying these elections were "meant to harm the national interests of Kashmiri people".
"Any sort of election under Indian occupational system, be it for so-called assembly, parliament, municipal committee or Panchayat is meant only to harm the national interests of Kashmiris. We cannot vote and hence strengthen the hands of those tyrants who separated innocent kids Maryam and Azra from their mothers and are forcing us to bury mutilated bodies of our kith and kin," said a statement, issued by the JRL.
JRL comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin appealed to the people of Kashmir to boycott "Panchayat election drama announced by so-called rulers."
They said Indian rulers have been using "election drama" to negate Kashmiri demand for self-determination and freedom.
"As a living nation, it is our responsibility to safeguard sacrifices rendered by our martyrs and never forget these sacrifices," said the leaders.
"How can we vote for those so-called rulers and their parties which are hell bent on installing RSS fascism in Jammu Kashmir, who wants to change the demography of this land and turn its Muslim majority into minority and who have killed thousands of men and women, who snatched eyesight of thousands by pellets, who have caged thousands of young and old, who are engaged in vandalizing our houses and putting our localities to flames in these cold days and who are using every tyrant method to suppress our resistance," they asked.
While appealing for a complete and comprehensive boycott of these so-called elections, especially the recently announced Panchayat elections, JRL leaders said that elections and institutions formed by these elections are detrimental to the interests of Kashmiris and as a living nation we all should keep away from this farce and boycott these elections in totality.
With an exemplary boycott of these elections, they said Kashmiris will deliver a message to India and to the international community that "Kashmiri want freedom from occupation and that they will accept nothing less than freedom and right to self determination."
Last week, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti told Governor N N Vohra that her government has decided to hold Panchayat elections in the state on February 15, 2018.