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Separatist Leader Geelani Disturbs Peace in Kashmir Ahead of 2014 Polls

November 4, 2013

After a hiatus of nine months, Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Geelani’s vitriolic anti-India comments are back again. Within few days of being released from house arrest, the hardline leader sounded the bugle of boycotting the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. There isn’t an iota of newness in his narrative he used while justifying the poll boycott call, but the old wine is repackaged in a somewhat new bottle to support his crowd-pulling endeavors. His dismissive comments are reminiscent of his prime when every public speech used to be followed by prolonged clashes.

Besides accusing ‘pro-India’ political parties of “working under the aegis of a military occupation”, Geelani tore into the very credibility of national parties for failing to ‘change things on the ground’. The octogenarian ideologue was at his fiery best during his maiden address after almost a year in the Sopore town of north Kashmir. Hopping from one issue to the other, he tried to build a strong case against taking part in the electoral process. What could be unnerving for the UPA government is the applause he received and pro-freedom slogans that echoed after his speech.

Kashmir has suffered pitilessly because of the provocative speeches of this separatist leader and the history repeated itself on that day. Sopore youth pelted stones on the police and the CRPF deployments, and bedlam was let loose. It’s a matter of grave concern for the country to see the repercussions of his carefully crafted remarks. Considered as the most powerful leader in ‘India-occupied Kashmir’, he is squarely blamed by the government for triggering anti-India sentiments and this is precisely what he has resumed doing. Geelani not only described mainstream politicians as “collaborators for continuing Indian rule in Kashmir” but also ridiculed the thought process of state political parties like the NCP and the PDP.

The Hurriyat chief tried to expand his ambit of discussion by dragging UN into his discourse. Stating that UN has failed ‘miserably’ to address core international issues, he urged his audience not to expect much from it. Much to the dismay of the central government, Geelani continues to pander to his pro-separation ideology. His recent speech once again negated any scope for a rethink on self-rule or autonomy proposals dished out by the PDP and the NCP, respectively. The ruling NCP might have rightly identified Geelani’s strategy to disturb peace in the state prior to the Lok Sabha and state assembly elections, but it seems to lack enough fangs to stop this vilification campaign.

With Kashmir assembly elections due in 2014 and the general elections also round the corner, more and more Kashmiri youths are ascribing to the separatists’ views. It is time the UPA government realized that when a demagogue like Geelani talks about the ‘sinister design’ of Indian authorities, he gets unconditional support of the majority. Brandishing his chosen accusations against Indian government and holding it responsible for diluting the Kashmir issue has fetched Geelani immense support in the past. He hasn’t lost his mojo, it seems. If the hardliners once again start harping on the same tune, the security issue would mar the possibility of restoring healthy democracy and encouraging Kashmiris to have faith in electoral process.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed are of those of the author and do not represent the views of Elections.in.

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Not too much of a social person.Like to be with just a handful of people, aspire to lead a healthy and happy life with a satisfying job in hand. Hate fake people and more than that I get offended with lies.Can't butter people no matter what the reason be!!