Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s resignation from Hurriyat Conference generated a debate in Kashmir on Monday.
There are people who see reason behind the decision as him being an “uncompromising leader” while others questioned the timing. Dr Noor Ahmad Baba, Professor at Central University of Kashmir’s Politics and Governance Department sees the decision having its bearing to Union Government’s August 5 decision.
“Post August 5 last year, Hurriyat is defunct. But we don’t know what is happening inside,” said Dr Baba.
“Hurriyat remained silent when there was more need to get politically mobilized, to get active and to respond. The situation was not conducive, maybe there was thinking that it was not the right time to respond. But maintaining complete silence, it looked strange,” he explained.
An Assistant Professor from Kashmir University, who wished not to be named, said Geelani’s intention was to provide space to new people in Hurriyat.
“Through this decision he has made an exit for himself. He has also given a signal to address the issues within Hurriyat. This was very much in the pipeline. He is a smart politician, considering that age is not on his side and it is better to allow somebody else to take lead,” he said.
However, Dr Abdul Bari, a Professor at Government Degree College Kulgam sees the decision in another way.
“It is not the right decision. It should have come 5-6 years back when his politics was at his peak. If he would have given new people a chance then maybe the situation would have been different all together,” said Dr Bari. An engineer from Srinagar’s Downtown area, wishing not to be named, sees Geelani’s decision about being remembered as a leader who didn’t compromise. “Age is not on his side. He wants to be remembered as a leader who was uncompromising and unflinching, someone who didn’t betray his people,” he said.