In what could snowball in to a major controversy on the eve of Lok Sabha by-polls, senior resistance leader, Shabir Ahmad Shah, has stepped down as Secretary General of Syed Ali Geelani led Hurriyat Conference (g).
The move is unprecedented at a time when top resistance leadership has been putting up a joint face since 2016 Eid ul Fitr.
Media reports as well as sources within Hurriyat Conference (g) confirmed to Kashmir Life that Shah put up his resignation from the post of Secretary General soon after he was released from police detention after 2016 public uprising.
The resignation has caused a stir within the ranks of Hurriyat led by octogenarian Geelani while many top activists termed it a “revolt”.
Sources in the Hurriyat said that Shah was “never” consulted whenever any major decision was taken in the amalgam particularly after Mirwaiz Umar and Yasin Malik joined Geelani last year.
Shah had joined Geelani in mid-2015 and was elevated as Sec Gen in November.
“Shah even informed Hurriyat patriarch Syed Ali Geelani that he would come to know about the decisions of the Hurriyat Conference through newspapers only,” sources said.
Shah who was earlier part of the Hurriyat Conference led by Mirwaiz Umar Farooq had parted ways from it and formed Hurriyat Conference JK. However, later after rounds of consultations, Shah, who has served more than 25 years of imprisonment decided to forge merger with Geelani led Hurriyat in September 2015.
Irritated, Shah later submitted resignation in February this year.
However, Shah didn’t reveal about his resignation to the press nor did anyone from the Hurriyat Conference (g) camp inform about the same to anyone till March 20.
Kashmir Life also independently called Shah several times about the resignation. However, he always feigned ignorance about the issue.
“Shah was irritated as how outsiders were influencing decision making in the conglomerate which he was heading as Sec Gen,” sources claimed.
“It was during much fanfare that Shabir Shah was elected as Sec Gen – 2nd top most position after Geelani. But he felt squeezed in his own space after Mirwaiz and Malik joined Geelani ahead of 2016 Eid ul Fitr.”
However, if reports are to be believed, Shah has resigned for altogether a different reason.
Shah told a local newspaper that he resigned because he was not able to perform his duties as General Secretary.
“I have been kept under detention for more than three years now, which is why there is no point in holding the charge,” Shah was quoted by the newspaper.