Srinagar, Aug 19 : All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) expressed amazement on the video statement given to a media agency by Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, where he refuted that the APHC chairman, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq is under house detention for the past three years since august 2019, but instead the forces vehicles and personnel stationed outside his house are there for his safety!
In a statement issued to the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), APHC said that such blatant misrepresentation of facts and denial of his incarceration is unbelievable. “Mirwaiz for the last three years has forcibly not been allowed to come out of his house despite repeated appeals and implorations from all sections of people to the authorities, including religious ulemas across the state.”
“Newspaper and electronic media reports bear witness to it. Being the Mirwaiz he is even stopped from going to Jamia Masjid on Fridays to deliver religious sermons from its pulpit which is the centuries old tradition in J&K, or to visit other religious places on important religious occasions. Except close relatives no one is allowed to enter the house. How can these facts are negated and claims of his not being under house arrest made!”
APHC said that if the authorities now want to release the Mirwaiz it is welcome, but giving such misleading statements to save face, is mischievous.
“It also wants to clear the air on LGs other statement in that interview that APHC leadership has been playing both sides.” APHC said that its chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq like his forefathers, has always believed in and supported the fundamental truth of democracy-people’s right to make a choice in their future through non violent means, without fear or favour; and the subsequent belief that this is the road to lasting peace and prosperity for the entire subcontinent.
“Mirwaiz and his forefathers represented and defended this basic interest of people of J&K in their engagements with both India and Pakistan and in the course suffered exile, Shahadat and incarcerations. It is the belief in these ideals that helped APHC chairman to bear the harshness and loneliness of house incarceration for past three years. There has never been any personal ambition of acquiring power to rule, or material gain that would tempt this leadership to play to or appease both or any side. Talks held with both India and Pakistan was only to find a resolution and get the people of Kashmir out of the viscous cycle of violence.”
APHC said that “it’s stand was and is consistent – the conflict of J&K has to be resolved as per the aspirations of its people and to the satisfaction of other two parties involved in the conflict namely India and Pakistan , through peaceful means preferably dialogue and deliberations. APHC has in the past and will in the future support every endeavour in this direction, safeguarding the interests of people of J&K.”
Meanwhile, it said that if the authorities have now decided to release the Mirwaiz, let him be allowed to deliver the Friday sermon at Jama Masjid this Friday and let them not stop people from assembling there to listen to him.
APHC reiterated its appeal to release all political prisoners, youth and activists detained in jails across India.