Separatists escalate their protest in Kashmir. After Pakistani flags, they now wave ISIS flags

| Friday, June 12, 2015 - 17:41
First Published |

Separatists raise ISIS flags in Kashmir

SRINAGAR: Taking their agitation to another level, Hurriyat supporters yet another time raised Pakistani and Islamic State flags in Kashmir on Friday. While Pakistani flags have continuously been waved and reappeared in Kupwara district of Jammu and Kashmir, ISIS flags were waved in Srinagar by the separatist leaders’ supporters. 

The followers of separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq were spotted waving the flags of Islamic State in Jama Masjid, Srinagar. 

While Pakistani and Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) flags have often been seen in the past on different occasions, this is probably the first time the separatist supporters have raised Islamic State flags in the state.

In a different episode, Hurriyat leader Shabir Ahmad Shah’s supporters were seen supporting Pakistani flags in the Kupwara district of Jammu and Kashmir and the protestors even raised pr-Pakistan slogans and insisted that the mortal remains of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru should be brought to his resident place.

In spite of the warning from the Central government recently against such activities in the valley, there appears to be no impact on the separatist leaders as they continue to dare the government by waving Pakistan flags repetitively.

On May 29, the supporters of the separatist leader Shabir Shah raised Pakistani flags in the Anantnag area of the Valley. The rally with three flags went on for at least 30 minutes but unfortunately, the authorities failed to take any action against them.

Earlier this month, hardline Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani tagged Pakistan as a ‘well-wisher’ and said that people will continue to wave Pakistani flags in the Kashmir valley. (Also Read: ‘I am not an Indian by birth, but by compulsion’: Kashmiri separatist Syed Ali Shah Geelani sparks another row)

“Pakistani flags have been waved in Kashmir since 1947 and In Sha Allah (God willing) will be waved in future also as Pakistan is not only our neighbor, but also a well wisher,” he said and added, “Kashmiris did not wish bad for Indians either but they certainly love Pakistan as the border country ‘is supporting the right of self determination to Kashmir’.” (Also Read: Pakistani flags have been waved since 1947. This will continue in Kashmir as Pakistan is our well-wisher, says separatist leader Geelani)

Ever since April 15, several episodes have been reported where many separatist rallies in Kashmir witnessed the appearance of the Pakistani flags. These events led to serious criticism towards the People’s Democratic Party government in the state not only by opposition parties, but also ally Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) extended its disagreement over the issue with the PDP.

The first such incident was reported in mid-April during a rally that was held by Hurriyat to welcome Geelani from Delhi. It was headed by separatist leader Masarat Alam and the state government had then reacted by arresting Alam and booking him under the Public Safety Act. (Also Read: Anti-India Rally in Srinagar: Nothing wrong in people waving Pakistan flags, says Masarat Alam)

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