‘Kya paygaam lay kay aaye ho?’ Geelani to visiting Congressman Aiyar & Co

Srinagar: Seasoned Congressman Mani Shankar Aiyar led delegation on Thursday stressed that there was no other way to resolve Kashmir than holding dialogue with Hurriyat Conference.

In an hour long meeting with Hurriyat patriarch Syed Ali Geelani at his fortified Hyderpora residence, Mani Shankar Aiyar, OP Shah, Kapil Kak and Vinod Sharma noted that Kashmir is the case of “broken” promises.

Unlike other events, the J&K government did not let media to cover the meeting.

A huge contingent of cops had already blocked the entrance of Rehmat Abad lane at Hyderpora leading to the house-cum-office of Geelani.

“I can’t let you move forward (towards residence of Geelani) as it will cost me my job,” a JKP cop told the FreePressKashmir reporter. Media persons were stopped around 100 meters away from the venue of the meet.

Around 4 pm when the delegation arrived in a Bolero, they were received by the office-bearers of Hurriyat Conference (G).

Details emerging from the meeting said that Mani Shankar Aiyar initiated the talks with Geelani. “The tone of the delegation members was more of an apologetic one,” a Hurriyat Conference (G) member present in the meeting told the FreePressKashmir.

While introducing the delegation members to Geelani, the Hurriyat Conference chief turned nostalgic and told O P Shah: ‘our first meeting took place in Tihar Jail’. “It is because of your military that India is here,” Geelani told O P Shah in response to a comment about the “big size of the delegation”.

“Although the delegation insisted that it was their personal initiative and Delhi had no role in their Kashmir visit,” said the Hurriyat Conference member, “but Geelani sahib was clear: kya paygaam lay kay aaye ho? (what is the message you have brought (from Delhi)).”

“We have come to listen to you,” Aiyar responded. “No,” Geelani reacted, “what is the message?”

Geelani said, “precisely and in clear terms, the Indian state is involved in state terrorism in Kashmir.”

Referring to Pulwama Degree College incident, he quoted Geelani as having said, “students are on the roads every day now, because Indian army men forcibly entered the college on April 15 and beat up the students, injuring many of them.”

“We do not want repetition of 2016 (uprising) this year,” the delegation members, told Geelani. “It is New Delhi which is responsible for the mayhem here. It is the Indian state which needs to behave itself,” Geelani answered.

Mani Shankar Aiyar led delegation during a meet with Syed Ali Geelani at latter’s Hyderpora residence-cum-office on May 25, 2017. (FPK Photo)

Maintaining that Kashmir was an internationally recognized dispute, Geelani told the delegation, “since 1947, Congress has exploited Kashmiris and now only the hands have changed.”

“And for controlling Kashmir, New Delhi has established stooges in the form of National Conference, PDP, PC, Congress here,” the octogenarian Hurriyat Conference chief said.

The Hurriyat Conference member said that the Aiyar delegation invoked the recent statement of engineer turned militant, and the former Hizb ul Mujahideen recruit, Zakir Moosa. “Islam is a complete way of life,” Geelani explained. “Islam guides us in all spheres of our life including politics.”

It may be noted, Moosa, in a recent audio message created furore when he said, “we are fighting for establishment of Khilafah in Kashmir.”

In their statement, the leader informed, “the delegation concluded that dialogue is the only way and GoI has to initiate talks, and Geelani’s role is pivotal in it.”

“It was not a closed door meeting and many Hurriyat Conference leaders including Peer Saifulla, Altaf Shah, Ayaz Akbar, and even Naseem Geelani – younger son of Syed Ali Geelani – were present in the meeting,” he added.

Interestingly, Geelani’s deputy and secretary general of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat, Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai, was conspicuously missing from the meeting.

Bidding adieu, the delegation members again insisted that “it was their personal initiative and that is why they (the five member delegation) were travelling in a single vehicle”.

Earlier in the day, Aiyar delegation met Mirwaiz Umar Farooq at his Nigeen residence. Later, they drove to Sanat Nagar and met Shabir Ahmad Shah.

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