'Situation in J&K gets more repressive with every day'

Situation in J&K gets ‘more repressive’ with each passing day: Mirwaiz

Farooq said that day in and out extreme laws are introduced to further curb people's freedom

Mirwaiz Umar Farooq. Credit: Twitter/@MirwaizKashmir

Breaking it’s over two-year silence, the moderate faction of Hurriyat Conference on Saturday expressed grave concern over the situation in Jammu and Kashmir which was getting “more and more repressive with each passing day.”

In an emailed statement a spokesperson of the separatist conglomerate quoting its chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said that day in and out “extreme laws are introduced to further curb people's freedom and intimidate them into silence through fear of retribution.”

“Sudden dismissals of government employees without any investigation or being given a chance to be heard is part of this policy as six more government employees have been sacked by the ruling dispensation,” he said.

In the last few months, Jammu and Kashmir government headed by Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha has terminated two dozen government employees, including two sons of Pakistan-based Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahudin, without holding any enquiry for their alleged involvement in anti-national activities.

Referring to newspaper reports that “lists have been prepared to dismiss hundreds of Kashmiri employees in this most foul manner to exacerbate the atmosphere of intimidation and fear in the valley”, the Mirwaiz said, “Under these bizarrely inhuman rules, employees can be even be dismissed from service if they or their family members are found to be ‘sympathetic’ to people accused under the (UAPA) and Public Safety Act (PSA).”

While strongly denouncing this “dictatorial approach” to deal with people's aspirations, the moderate Hurriyat said “these laws are meant to silence people into submission, crush their freedom of expression and speech and quell any kind of dissent.”

The Hurriyat also lashed out at the government for targeting media persons and media houses through raids and confiscation of their equipment. “Continued raids by government agencies on organisations and homes of people and slapping of PSA and other harsh laws on them, picking up of youth, their arbitrary arrests constant surveillance of people continues unabated across J&K as a state policy, as the number of Kashmiris in jails and detention centre's further swells,” they alleged.

The separatist conglomerate said that the ruling dispensation should stop pursuing the “policy of intimidation and retribution against the people of J&K by withdrawing these harsh laws and restore people's freedoms and liberties.”

Before August 5, 2019, most of the separatist organizations, including moderate and hardliner factions of the Hurriyat, would issue statements almost daily in which they used to bash the government of India and its policies in Kashmir. The statements would get prominent space in local newspapers. However, post abrogation of Article 370, local media has almost not carried any news related to the separatists.

The separatists too have found it difficult to issue statements or strike calls as most of their men are either in jails or evading arrests. However, from the last few months the moderate Hurriyat faction has started to issue some statements and the tone and tenor of today’s statement matches to their older days.

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