SRINAGAR: Following the arrest of Kashmiri Separatist leader Masarat Alam on Friday, clashes have erupted in Srinagar and the police had to resort to lathicharge and tear gas shelling to disperse the large crowd. (Also Read: Separatist leader Masarat Alam arrested in Srinagar)
The protest is being headed by Hurriyat Conference leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq in Nowhatta in Srinagar where the protestors claim that the arrest of Alam is unlawful.
The disturbance in Srinagar came after Masarat Alam was arrested for waving the Pakistan flags to greet Hurriyat leader Geelani at a rally on Wednesday and raising pro-Pakistan slogans there which was an anti-India rally. (Also Read: Anti-India Rally in Srinagar: Nothing wrong in people waving Pakistan flags, says Masarat Alam)
Alam, taken to an interrogation centre will be produced before the magistrate later on Friday.
On the other hand, separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani too has been placed under house arrest as the two leaders were scheduled to hold a rally in Tral to protest the death of a youth in a recent encounter. (Also Read: J&K Clashes: One youth killed, protesters seize AK-47; Yasin Malik, Masarat Alam detained)
Cases against six other separatists have also been filed.
In spite of being arrested, Alam maintained that his scheduled rally in Tral against the death of a youth in an encounter with Army will be executed as per plans.
The arrest of Masarat Alam came after the ruling ally in Jammu and Kashmir, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) threatened to skip the next Cabinet meeting if the state government failed to arrest him. However, Waheed Para, Peoples Democratic Party spokesperson denied allegations of ordering Alam’s arrest following the pressure from the Centre. (Also Read: Separatists’ Rally in J&K: Rajnath Singh talks to Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, seeks strict action)
“No action related to Masarat Alam’s arrest has been taken under pressure and the government has acted according to the procedure. There should be no sensationalism in this. It is being projected as if the J&K police are only operating under the pressure from the Home Ministry,” he said.
Alam was booked for unlawful activities and an FIR too was lodged against him. He was released from jail in March, following the orders from Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed. (Also Read: SRINAGAR: Masrat Alam booked for unlawful activities)
During his anti-India rally on Wednesday welcoming Geelani, Alam had also allegedly praised Lashker-e-Taiba (LeT) terror outfit’s founder Hafeez Mohammed Sayeed and urged people to join hands with his outfit.
After the J&K CM faced massive criticism for permitting Syed Ali Shah Geelani to hold another rally in Srinagar on Wednesday, Mufti Sayeed asked the police to cancel the permission for a rally in Tral.