Hailing the resilience of people of Tral in South Kashmir, Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front Chairman Muhammad Yasin Malik Monday said that unity among pro-freedom leadership has unnerved New Delhi and urged people to protect this unity.
Malik managed to give slip to security forces and drove alone to Tral from Srinagar during night. He reached Sharifabad, the native village of slain Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, at 6:30 a.m. where he met Burhan's father and expressed condolences to him.
As the people of Sharifabad came to know about Malik's visit, local youth assembled outside Burhan's residence and took Malik through orchards to famous shrine Khankhah-e-Faiz Panah Tral to prevent his arrest.
Soon after Zuhr prayers, hundreds of people assembled outside the shrine and took Malik to main chowk Tral amid pro-freedom and pro-Burhan slogans. Addressing a massive gathering there, the JKLF chief hailed the resilience and courage of the people of Tral.
"You belong to an area which has a great history of sacrifices. In the past, this area has made priceless sacrifices and scores of youth were killed by forces here. In the ongoing uprising, this area emerged as a major attraction for entire world," Malik said. "This area gave us a militant commander who gave sleepless nights to even New Delhi, let alone J&K government."
Malik said he salutes the people of Tral for their courage and sacrifices. "I salute you for giving us Burhan. I salute the patience of women and children of this area, who stood like a rock against the oppression of forces," he said. "Burhan's death has led to unity among the pro-freedom leadership. There is complete unity among Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik. Now it's the collective responsibility of the people of Kashmir to protect this unity."
He said protest programs are coming from the joint resistance leadership and people must follow them religiously. "Let me tell you, our unity has unnerved New Delhi and also its stooges in J&K. Delhi has decided to break this unity and efforts are being made in that direction," Malik said. "Some anti-Kashmir people are working hard to break the will and unity of people of Kashmir. I appeal to you, to safeguard this till the present struggle is taken to its logical conclusion."
Malik said the 135 days of continuous struggle and resistance despite 97 killings, over 15000 injuries, "oppression of all types, and unlimited atrocities", people of Kashmir remain steadfast and demand resolution of Kashmir. "It's not an easy task to sustain for 135 days. This reflects Kashmir as a nation is strong and won't let anyone break their resolve," Malik said as people raised pro-freedom and pro-Islam slogans.
The JKLF chief also took a dig at Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti stating that when there was National Conference regime in J&K, "Madam Mehbooba would beat her chest over the atrocities committed by the then government. She would call SOG men main perpetrators of human rights violations and would weep at the residences of slain militants. She would also criticise NC government for booking stone pelters under PSA. She sought votes using these things as poll plank."
"Today, same person justifies killings in the ongoing uprising." Malik said whosoever comes to people to seek votes is helping New Delhi and its forces here to tighten their grip on Kashmir.
Malik later reached the local martyrs graveyard in the form of a procession where he along with hundreds of people offered Fatiha for slain Hizb commander.
Later talking to reporters, Malik said he had an emotional meeting with the family of Burhan. "This house is full of sacrifices and courage. Kashmir and its people can never forget their sacrifices," he said.
Meanwhile, Tral, the epicentre of ongoing unrest triggered by Burhan's killing on July 8, continues to remain restive even after 135 days. Shop shutters and walls are painted with pro-freedom and pro-Burhan graffiti. Almost all the shops remained closed on the strike call given by joint resistance leadership.