Army rules JK: Mirwaiz

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By: Khalid Gul
Islamabad (Anantnag), Dec 2: Alleging that military rule was prevailing in the state, chairman All Parties Hurriyat Conference (M), Mirwaiz Umar Farooq Friday said the state government has always been serving the interests of New Delhi.
“In Jammu and Kashmir there is no democratic or civilian government as is being claimed by New Delhi and pro-Indian parties, instead it is the Army rule which is prevailing here and they (Army) are the final authority,” Mirwaiz told a gathering outside Rehat Ded mosque in this South Kashmir town after offering Friday congregational prayers.
He said though many believe that in Pakistan the Army has the final say in the decision-making but in Kashmir the state government has to adhere to the decision of even the Corps Commander.
Terming the Chief Minister of the state as a ‘nominal head,’ Mirwaiz said, “The Chief Minister of the state has to follow the diktats of his masters in New Delhi and he can’t take any decision on the revocation of Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) or release of prisoners. He and his government are only serving the interests of New Delhi.”
Accusing the state government of unleashing a reign of terror in the state, Mirwaiz said, “India is trying to suppress the freedom movement through its military might. Youth and even minors are being harassed and booked under draconian laws. But I want to make clear to India that people of Kashmir are not associated with freedom movement due to any personal interests but because of their aspirations and feelings.”
Mirwaiz said that not a single FIR was registered against the forces responsible for killing 122 innocent people during the last year’s summer unrest while a commission was appointed into the death of a National Conference worker.
“On one hand government claims that situation has improved in the valley but on the other they are reluctant to remove bunkers and withdraw forces,” he said.
Mirwaiz said, “The Kashmir freedom struggle is not only 20-year old, instead Kashmiris have fought for their rights in 1892 during Maharaja Rule and then again in 1931 when a movement against oppression was started by Muslim Conference.”
Terming the Army’s Operation Sadhbavana as a conspiracy, Mirwaiz said, “The exercise is aimed at giving the people particularly those in remote areas the impression that Army is for the welfare of the people and thus legitimize their presence. So I appeal the people to come forward and help the poor, needy and orphans in these remote and border areas.”
Reiterating that Hurriyat Conference was not against India-Pak dialogue, Mirwaiz said, “We are not against talks but Kashmiris should be involved too. It is imperative for the dialogue process to be result-oriented and for that both the countries should withdraw their forces, all draconian laws in the state should be repealed and prisoners released.”
Stating that international community was taking the Kashmir issue seriously, Mirwaiz said Kashmir is on the centre-stage in international politics. “Recently a resolution was passed by the European Parliament about the existence of unmarked graves and human rights violations perpetrated by forces in Kashmir,” he said.
Hurriyat Conference, he said, would continue to raise the voice of Kashmiris on every forum whether United Nations or European Parliament and the day was not far when the people of Kashmir will decide their own fate.
“People of Kashmir have offered tremendous sacrifices and our struggle is based on principles. History is testimony to the fact that truth always prevails,” he added.
On the apostasy issue, Mirwaiz stressed on strengthening of Bait-ul-Maal.
“Certain people including some NGOs are luring people to Christianity by providing them monetary benefits. It is a cause of concern for every conscious Muslim and we should rise to the occasion and counter this practice by strengthening Bait-ul-Maal in our localities as poverty has been seen the most common reason for conversions.”
He said that though they can’t stop anybody from propagating their own religion but luring people by providing them monetary benefits is not acceptable.
“Our Tableeghi Jamaats also go to each and every nook and corner of the world to spread Islam but they do it on the basis of principles and not by providing any kind of financial assistance,” he said.
Mirwaiz further said that prior to ’90s there were only 225 Christians in the state and the number has now reached to more than 20,000.
Senior Hurriyat leader and Peoples League Chairman Mukhtar Ahmad Waza was also present on the occasion. Later a pro-freedom demonstration was carried out which culminated at Lal Chowk.

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