Caged Geelani

In what some analysts call a ‘big risk’ the government is going all the way to keep ailing separatist Syed Ali Shah Geelani under detention despite his falling health.  Majid Maqbool reports.

The government is reluctant to release ailing separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani even though reports say he is critically ill. Geelani’s health has been deteriorating in the past few weeks. He is suffering from cervical spondylosis and is undergoing physiotherapy in SKIMS. Geelani is a cardiac and chest patient as well, and he is also suffering from chronic bronchitis.
Relatives says he is suffering from loose motion these days.
“After every two to four months Geelani sahab needs to see his personal doctor Dr Sameer Koul in Delhi. But due to his arrests since 25th March Geelani sahab hasn’t been able to see his doctor,” Hurriyat (G) spokesperson of Hurriyat (G) Ayaz Akber.
Geelani, who is presently admitted at SKIMS for treatment, has been rearrested four times since June 6 this year. Lodged at different police stations over the years, four FIRs have been produced against the ailing leader in the past 40 days.
Earlier Geelani was put under house arrest for 70 days beginning from March 30. On June 6 he was arrested under section 107/ 151 by police station Humhama for disrupting law and order. He was later bailed out by high court.
On July 7 he was again arrested under section 18 of unlawful activities act and section 121 (RPC). Geelani was detained for speaking against the state administration and police officials in a press conference in 2006. Police had claimed that Geelani has been at large since then.
Third FIR (FIR, no 134 of 2004) was lodged against Geelani by police station Safakadal. Safakadal police station had booked Geelani under section 13 unlawful activities act. Police had detained him in a newly surfaced case that was registered against Geelani for delivering a “hate speech” five years back in 2004.
On July 15 fourth FIR (FIR no. 12/06) was lodged against Geelani by police station Rajbagh. This time he was arrested for delivering a “hate speech” in 2006 after he had arrived from hajj. He has been booked under section 13-unlawful activities act. Police said the case was registered after Geelani had delivered “hate speech” against the state in 2006.
Geelani’s lawyer and son-in-law Altaf Ahmad Shah told Kashmir Life that all these FIRs lodged against Geelani are bailable. “We have moved for bail application today. We have been asking for details of FIRs lodged against Geelani sahib in all the police stations in the Valley. Notices have been issued to police and they are supposed to file it by 20th of July,” said Altaf Ahmad.
On July 17 Chief Judicial Magistrate Srinagar asked SSP Srinagar to produce all the FIRs registered against Geelani in different police stations of the valley before the court.
The CJM also directed SHO Rajbagh Police station to furnish the report concerning the FIR 12/2006 lodged against Geelani under section 13 U.L.A and 10 CLA before July 20.
Akbar alleges that government is seeking political revenge by detaining Geelani. “If anything happens to Geelani under police detention National Conference would be held responsible,” he says. “The administration has made a joke of the judicial system. Every time Geelani gets bail from the court, he is detained in a new case,” he said.
Hurriyat conference (G) has also appealed to the regional head of Red Cross office in Srinagar to intervene in the case on humanitarian grounds. “We have a police state here and whatever police wants, it can do it,” he said.


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