Accusing police of laying a siege around historic Jamia Masjid here on every Friday to prevent large gatherings, Chairman Huriyat Conference (M) Mirwaiz Umar Farooq Friday said that it was due to government's harsh policies that educated boys of Kashmir were picking up arms. He said that choking political space is pushing Kashmiris to the wall.
Addressing Friday congregation at Jamia Masjid, Miwaiz said that it was unfortunate every Friday authorities lay a siege around the grand Masjid to ensure there is no large gathering of people. "Restrictions and curbs are laid around Jamia on every Friday and people are prevented from reaching the masjid for offering Friday prayers," he said.
"Government is not yet satisfied despite killing over 100 people and injuring over 15000 in the past five months of uprising. Kashmiris especially the youth are witnessing worst form of atrocities by the police and other forces," Miwaiz said. "It is because of the worst form of oppression that our educated youth are picking up arms. Besides, there is a tremendous anger among the youth against the government. This is bound to happen when all forms of rights are crushed under military might."
He said people's anger is fully justified given the nature of "aggression" by the police and forces. "There are restrictions and curbs for offering prayers. Pro-freedom leadership is not allowed to meet people and there is a ban on even holding religious functions," Mirwaiz said in reference to recent ban on a Tehreek-e-Hurriyat seminar at Syed Ali Geelani's residence.
He announced that joint resistance leadership is working on long-term means of protest and would consult all sections of society before making the program public. "Our new program has to be followed in letter and spirit by the people. We need to safeguard the sacrifices rendered by the youth. Our new program will help us to achieve the goal of right to self determination," Mirwaiz said.
Seeking the immediate attention of OIC and Arab League in stopping the bloodshed of Muslims in Kashmir, Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan and Palestine, he said, "It's an irony that bloodshed is taking place at a time when Umah is observing birth anniversary of Prophet Muhammad (SAW)."
Mirwaiz expressed anger over the ill treatment meted out to youth in various prisons of the State. "Young boys are kept in prison cells along with criminals. We strongly condemn this and demand immediate release of youth detained the past five months," he said.
Earlier, Mirwaiz led a massive joint rally outside the Jamia Masjid where Hurriyat Conference (G) leader Peer Saifullah and Sheikh Abdur Rashid of JKLF also addressed the gathering. People raised pro-freedom and pro-Islam slogans. Addressing the gathering, Mirwaiz said that pro-freedom leadership is committed to take the present struggle to its logical conclusion. "We have a commitment with people and with the nation. We won't be bogged down by oppression and would continue our struggle till the goal is achieved," he declared.