Riyaz Ul Khaliq

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Octogenarian Syed Ali Geelani addressing seminar at his office-cum residence in uptown Hyderpora on Wednesday.
Octogenarian Syed Ali Geelani addressing seminar at his office-cum residence in uptown Hyderpora on Wednesday.

Relating ‘elimination’ of Jammu Muslims from their respective areas with the silence of CM Mufti Muhammad Sayeed and MP Mehbooba Mufti, All Parties Hurriyat Conference (g) Secretary General Ghulam Nabi Sumji Wednesday said that all those who have issues with Muslims in Jammu and Kashmir should be invited to listen to their viewpoint.

Speaking at a seminar organized by the Hurriyat amalgam at Syed Ali Geelani’s residence-cum-office in uptown Hyderpora, Sumji said, “the seminar should have been held in Jammu itself which has been made target by Hindu right wing nationalists.” The seminar was titled: Jammu and Kashmir – A Single Geographical Entity.

Sumji detailed what he termed as demographic change in the state. “These agendas of RSS and BJP are actually to divert our attention from the basic demand of Right to Self Determination,” he said adding, “the Hindu right wing parties are strengthening their base in Jammu and the silence of our own Muslims bureaucrats is criminal.”

He said that the decrease in Muslim population is alarming and is happening since 1947. “Long back ago, I met Muhammad Shafi Pandit who was Chief Secretary then and told him that why is he and his colleagues are maintaining criminal silence on such an  grave issue,” he said implying that the Muslim bureaucrats have to speak against such nefarious designs.

Taking a dig at PDP led government in Jammu and Kashmir, Sumji asked, “what is the purpose of issuing Public Resident Certificates (PRCs) in Schools; these two things have no connection.”

“The BJP and RSS are doing such things to implement their designs,” he said.

He said, “BJP has got impetus due to PDP support in J&K to implement their designs.” “By doing this Mufti will not get an inch of land for his grave in his native village of Bijbehara.” “He did the century’s wrong,” Sumji said, “PDP’s support is helping RSS to expand here.”

Representing Democratic Freedom Party Chairperson Shabir Ahmad Shah in the seminar, Muhammad Abdullah Tari said that oppressed nations should not expect any good from an occupied nation. “Demographic changes and destruction is part of occupier’s agenda and that is what is happening in J&K,” he said. “However,” he said, “we are lacking confidence in fighting the oppressor.”

A Muslim representative from Jammu, Sartaj Sharief while detailing the recent developments in Jammu region alleged that the administration of Jammu has been ‘saffronised’.

“When we recently approached court of justice in Dangal case,” Sartaj said, “the court prolonged the case.” “There is a visible change in behaviour of judiciary.”

Sharief said that in a village in Bishna tehsil, Muslims have a graveyard measuring 25 Kanals and 13 Marlas. “The graveyard is older than partition of India itself but still Hindu right wingers came and started preparations for Dangal event to which we objected,” he said.

He said that when administration and court sensed that the event may trigger crisis, they did not allow the event and Deputy Commissioner remained in the area for whole day. “And when  in the evening DC left the place, the DIG concerned came and allowed some people to hold Dangal which was later stopped,” he said.

Further he alleged that the medical services too are biased towards Muslims. “Whenever doctors and paramedical staff in Jammu hospitals see a man with beard and Topi, they turn blind eye towards them,” he said.

Narrating his own experience, he said, “When some people attacked me, I was rushed to hospital; I was left high and dry when CMO came to know about me; while blood was oozing out of my wound, the CMO neglected it and was busy reading papers and when I reacted he put a bandage on my injury and was sent back.”

“The blood was not stopping and when I consulted a Muslim doctor, he referred me for operation and the doctor who operated upon me said, ‘it was matter of ten or fifteen more minutes as you had suffered huge loss of blood’,” Sharief said.

He said that whenever Muslims in the area face problem “police ask them not to call any community leader or they will face PSA”. “In Kishtwar, eight youth are still behind bars; everything is happening on BJP directions.”

Referring to LK Advani’s trifurcation of J&K as its solution”, Sharief said, “some time back few Hurriyat leaders too were saying that they will think on Muslim majority areas but we will not let that happen.” He said, “in Jammu, our biggest sacrifice is being Hurriyat pasand.”

Senior Hurriyat leader and National Front head, Nayeem Ahmad Khan while speaking on the occasion said, “we shall not be free unless and until we strengthen our political and armed fronts.”

“Nobody would dare to touch Muslims in Rajouri, Poonch, Baderwah, Doda or Jammu when they had support of armed struggle,” he said.

He said that when Kashmiris talk of J&K it means “J&K of pre-1947”.

“But India has been brutal and divisive; they empowered Buddhists of Leh; they don’t respect constitution of J&K and they have their own constitution,” he said. “Separate budget is allotted to them.”

He said that only Muslims in Jammu and Kashmir is oppressed lot. “The demographic change is a well design plan of India,” he said. “We will have to be strong on three fronts: Political, armed and foreign levels.”

He said that India was pressurized to send its delegation of parliamentarians at “our door steps because of 2010”. “They tried to meet detained leadership as well,” he said.

“We are one Millat; whenever we say that we are one and we are Muslims, nobody will dare to touch us,” he said.

He further said that Pakistan has been the moral support of Kashmiris. “People on the other part sent their children here; they have been our support but we sold our conscience for petty interests,” he said adding, “I have not come here for photo options but to make my view point understand.”

“Pakistani people have shed their blood on this part of land,” he said. “We should not compare India and Pakistan and see them through same prism.”

“We have committed to mistakes in past but we should learn from them; we should work altogether and unity efforts should be taken forward fast,” he added.

Representing JKLF chief, Muhammad Yasin Malik, Noor Muhammad Kalwal suggested that the separatist camp should have institutions working to foresee evil designs. “We should be able to know these designs so as to stop them,” he said adding, “we are reminded of such issues only when we experience them.”

“Without Unity among separatists,” Kalwal said, “we can’t move forward to stop India.” “However,” he asserted, “we have to respect each other’s stature and position; we have to listen to different view-points.”

Raising a slogan, “Jis Azaadi mein Jammu nahi  —  who Azaadi manzoor nahi,” Kalwal said, “we are one; J&K is a single entity and we are always with Muslims of Jammu.”

Senior separatist leader, Agha Hassan Al Moosvi said, “we will not let down Muslims of Jammu.” “But,” he said, “unity amongst separatists will help Jammu Muslims in true sense.”

Senior woman separatist leader and DeM chief, Aasiya Andrabi speaking on the occasion said that it was first Britain which stabbed Muslims in 1947.

She said that geographical unity is meaningless until and unless people have ideological unity. She said that many attempts were tried to trifurcate J&K unsuccessfully but since 2002 RSS is trying to divide state and now they have got the opportunity.

Asking Muslims of Jammu to stand on their own feet, Andrabi said, “since 1947 there has been systematic decrease in percentage of Muslims.”

Andrabi said, “Muslims of Jammu should relate with Kashmiri Muslims.” “Being in majority in valley, we too are not spared,” she said.

Expressing her reservation on unity, she said, “when everybody is talking about unity why do separatist groups have different flags and structures?” “When we don’t have ideological unity, geographical unity is meaningless.”

While referring to Muslims of Jammu, she said, “we are not allowed to cross tunnel; Hurriyat leaders are detained and Geelani Sahab is not allowed to move out of his courtyard.” “Stand on your legs and show your unity with your valley counterparts and the Hindu nationalists will fear you.”

While leaving the dais, Andrabi suggested Geelani, who chaired the seminar, that coming Friday should be observed as “Day of Unity” with Muslims of Jammu.

Noted Columnist and Chartered accountant, Abdul Majid Zargar said, “separatists need to be cautious about supporting trifurcation narrative of state.” “UN resolutions relate to whole of J&K including Gilgit-Baltistan, and Azad Kashmir and if trifurcation narrative is followed or strengthened then UN resolutions lose their relevance.” “If it happens, the problem will remain because then minorities in majority regions will ask for freedom.”

He added, “if we ask for division of J&K then we are actually supporting and accepting the plan of RSS who have been since its birth working on such a plan.”

Taking exception to Pakistan’s move to merge Gilgit-Baltistan as fifth province, he said, “it shall weaken our stand in UN; it would be disastrous as UN resolutions relate to whole of J&K.”

Tehreek-i-Hurriyat Secretary General and lifetime associate of octogenarian Geelani, Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai in his address to the seminar took exception to title of the seminar.

“I have reservations with ‘single geographical entity’,” he said in his opening remarks. “RSS has been claiming whole of South Asia, parts of South Africa, Afghanistan and Iran as its parts,” he said. “And its political wing BJP has now got an opportunity to implement its agenda in J&K.” He added, “PDP has put a challenge to unity of J&K by siding with RSS.”

While detailing the history of J&K of Muslims of Jammu, Sehrai said, “credit goes to Jammu Muslim leadership who never deceived its people against the leaders in Kashmir who many a times kept its people in dark.”

Sehrai said, “geographical entities can change but ideological unity remains same.” “What happened to Indian South Asian sub-continent in 1947 and 1971,” he asked. “Ideologies are must and it helps in unity not geography.”

Taking a dig at Pakistan, Sehrai said, “it is Pakistan’s top priority to safeguard Muslims in J&K but it is not doing so; same applies to Afghanistan and Iran.”

In his presidential address, ailing Geelani said that coming Friday should be observed as ‘Day of Unity’ with Muslims of Jammu. “Friday sermons should mention Muslims of Jammu and they should get a feel that we have not left them.” Geelani was Tuesday hospitalized for severe chest infection. When octogenarian Geelani started addressing the seminar, someone asked, “is it Peer Sahab speaking?” He referred to freaking voice of Geelani.

While justifying the title of the seminar Geelani said, “we want to tell India that J&K is a single entity and they can’t change it.” “We won’t let anyone divide it.”

He also said that Hurriyat has been always maintaining that Jammu means people across ideological divide. “We don’t mean only Muslims but Hindus, Sikhs and Christians as well.”

He said that the situation in Jammu is happening since 1947. “Jammuites have huge sacrifices than Kashmiris; they have more than five Lakh martyrs,” he said.

Taking a dig at National Conference, Geelani said, “its leader used to recite holy Qur’an at the stage but later deceived people.” “This party along with Congress has been most oppressive and they are the reason for our slavery.”

Referring to membership drive launched by NC in Srinagar a few days ago, Geelani said, “see their arrogance; they are the reason for our miseries and I wish people understand it.”

Asking Muslims of Jammu to protest excesses, he said, “you (Jammu Muslims) should have uniformity with valleyites.” “Media have to play its part in safeguarding interests of Muslims of state.”

Giving break up of administrative posts of state on religion basis, Geelani further said, “it is our tragedy that well off people are not taking serious things into consideration; they should invest in Technical education so that our daughters don’t go outside state for such needs.”

Taking a dig at PDP led government, he said, “there have been 24 civilians killings and 130 third degree torture cases in its rule, so far.”


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