Was Geelani’s Succession Debate a Deliberate One?

Riyaz Ul Khaliq


Ailing Syed Ali Geelani being escorted by his associates to walk into the seminar at his Hyderpora residence on Sunday. (KL Image: Bilal Bahadur)
Ailing Syed Ali Geelani being escorted by his associates to walk into the seminar at his Hyderpora residence on Sunday. (KL Image: Bilal Bahadur)

Was the debate over who will succeed Hurriyat patriarch Syed Ali Geelani a “deliberate” one? Similar views were expressed by an academician at a seminar in Srinagar on Sunday.

The not-so-good health conditions of 87 year old Geelani had created a lot of ripples in Kashmir resistance camp as who will be the successor of the Octogenarian leader.

Speaking during a seminar to discuss proposed “Sainik, Pandit Colonies and New Industrial Policy,” Dr Sheikh Showkat Hussain, a law professor today, said, “they (Hurriyat Conference) have come out of a syndrome.”

The law professor said, “this forum has become live today.” He was referring to the seminar being organized by the Hurriyat Conference to deliberate upon the issues concerning Kashmir.

Deliberating further as what he termed as “syndrome”, Dr Hussain said, “there was a debate, debate of succession going on here some time ago and today (by holding such a program) they have come out of that.”

He claimed, “that (succession debate) was deliberately imposed on us.”

Syed Ali Geelani and Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai
Syed Ali Geelani and Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai

Notable to mention here, Kashmir Life, on May 2nd 2016 reported that Hurriyat patriarch Syed Ali Geelani had ‘willed’ his life time associate and deputy, Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai, as his sucessor. However, later that day, Geelani in a presser had said that his party “was well aware what to do about it (his successor) when I’m not around”.

However, Hurriyat Conference (g) spokesperson, Ayaz Akbar, who was moderating today’s seminar jointly organized by Hurriyat factions and JKLF, said, “the succession debate only came up when the health condition of Geelani had deteriorated. Everyone knows it.”

Praying for healthy and long life of Hurriyat Conference (g) chairperson, Akbar said, “Geelani sahab had even willed as who would lead his Jinaza.”

Meanwhile, in his analysis about “Sainik and Pandit Colonies” and New Industrial Policy, Dr Hussain said, “attitude of every imperialist force to transform demography what we experience here is no different.”

He referred to North Ireland issue in United Kingdom and Xinjiang issue in China to support his claim. “When people in Hong Kong (China) were asked to decide about their citizenship in post British imperial era, some of them chose to remain with UK. They were flown by Britain to Northern Ireland and settled there.”

He said the settling of those who came from Hong Kong was only to change demography of Northern Ireland which was seeking freedom from UK.

Similarly, he added, China followed the same policy. “Chinese people from mainland were settled in Xinjiang province. The resultant is natives of Xinjiang and those from mainland Chinese broke into war against each other and the issue of Self Determination got trampled over,” he said. “RSS sees this as only solution to Kashmir as well.”

He further said, “systems orient, organize and tend to disorganize the discourses.”


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