Srinagar: Hurriyat (M), lead by Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Tuesday lashed out at former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, saying that her ‘outrage’ at Jamia Masjid pulpit desecration was ‘ironical’ as Friday prayers were barred at the historic mosque most of the time during her rule.
The statement comes day after Mehbooba rang up Mirwaiz to express her outrage over the incident.
In a statement, a Hurriyat (M) spokesman said: “The phone call of Ms Mehbooba Mufti to its chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq condemning the Jamia incident which she is broadcasting in media for obvious reasons, is quite ironical as it was during her tenure as CM that the people were barred from offering prayers at the mosque most of the time.”
He said that the mosque was locked down for three months in 2016 and in 2017 for the first time even Jumat ul Vida congregation during Ramzan was not allowed and in 2018 for 16 Friday prayers were barred at the mosque.
“On all these days, Mirwaiz was either put under house arrest or in jail as in 2016,” said the spokesman, adding: “If Ms Mufti during her tenure as CM had the same feelings towards Jamia Masjid which she calls ‘the landmark and most important religious and social institution of Kashmir’ at whose desecration she is ‘outraged’ today, and had showed the courage to stand up for the religious rights of the Muslims of valley instead of presiding over the bans and bars on Jamia Masjid then her “outrage “would at least have been sincere.”
After the Friday congregational prayers last week, a group of masked boys entered the Jamia Masjid and desecrated the pulpit of the mosque.
The incident took place in Jama Masjid in the afternoon after the namazis had left. In the meantime his associates videotaped it.
In the video which was widely shared on social media, the hooligans can be seen on the Mimbar (Pulpit) of the mosque waving the ISIS flag. They can also be heard chanting slogans in favour of ISIS (Daulat-e-Islam).
The Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik on Monday held a meeting at Geelani’s Hyderpora residence in view of the incident.
At Jamia Masjid, while addressing people, Mirwaiz asked people to be vigilant and ‘expose the black sheep involved in the act.