Curbs on paying homage at Mazar-e-Shohda highly regrettable: Altaf Bukhari

SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP) president Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari on Monday termed the restrictions imposed on the visit of political parties to Mazar-e-Shohda for paying homage to July 13, 1931 martyrs as highly regrettable.

Locked gates of Ziyarat Naqshband Sahab in Khwaja Bazar area on July 13 martyrs day. KL Image by Bilal Bahadur

In a statement issued here, Bukhari said that the martyrs’ graveyard in Old Srinagar city symbolizes the legacy of those brave hearts and sons of the soil who sacrificed their lives to lay edifice for democracy and natural justice in Jammu and Kashmir.

“Putting curbs on the visit of political parties to martyrs’ graveyard for paying homage to our heroes who laid down their precious lives against autocracy and oppression is unjustifiable,” Bukhari observed.

He said that July 13, 1931, is a historic day for the people of Jammu and Kashmir as the day marks the beginning of a struggle against suppression and inequality and its relevance will remain the same for times to come.

While paying glowing tributes to the July 13, 1931 martyrs, Bukhari cautioned that the suppression of democratic activities under any pretext does not augur well with the constitutional guarantees enjoyed by the citizens in this country.

He said that the lives laid down by the martyrs on July 13, were principally meant to free the society from autocracy and lay edifice for a democratic setup.  “These sacrifices were not made on any communal lines as is being unfortunately projected by some sections of the society. The day assumes significance because our 22 fearless souls showed undaunted courage to uphold the principles of democracy and human dignity and had nothing to do with any particular dynasty or a clan.”

He appealed to the people to join hands to develop J&K as a society based on natural justice and principles of democratic temperament as was envisioned by the July 13 martyrs.

“People should work to strengthen our socio-cultural ethos of tolerance and brotherhood which forms the soul of democracy. The powers that be should understand that people of J&K have fought for upholding principles of equality and human dignity all along with its glorious past. JKAP also pledges to strive for implementation of those principles in letter and spirit,” he remarked.


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