Moderate Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umer Farooq on Saturday blasted his hardline counterpart for accusing him of having a secret meeting with emissaries of Narendra Modi, saying Syed Ali Shah Geelani was making irresponsible statements aimed at creating confusion among people.
"The Hurriyat has taken a very serious note of this baseless and fabricated allegation. We believe the statement of Geelani is a deliberate attempt to mislead freedom-loving people of Jammu and Kashmir.
"The Hurriyat rejects the allegation. Neither we had a meeting with any BJP leader or his representatives nor with the emissaries of Modi," Mirwaiz told reporters.
He said praising former prime minister A B Vajpayee's initiatives on Kashmir did not mean endorsing the BJP or any individual.
"How will the Hurriyat Conference be helping Modi. We are not in the electoral fray. Yes, I have said the NDA under Vajpayee took some initiatives on Kashmir but those were not followed up by the UPA. But that does not mean that anybody is endorsing the BJP or the NDA or any particular person. This is completely wrong," Mirwaiz said.
Accusing Geelani of pursuing holier than thou approach to prove others wrong, he said the hardliner had time and again tried to create misgivings among the people.
"Every now and then he is coming out with statements which only create misgivings among the people. In the past following his statements many Hurriyat leaders were targeted.
"Whom does he want to see getting killed now? Against whom he wants to create misconception among the people?" asked Mirwaiz.
"He should go for self-introspection before levelling allegations against others. This person has fought a dozen elections and took oath (under the Indian Constitution) and is criticising others now," the Hurriyat chairman said.
Mirwaiz alleged baseless aspersions cast on several separatist leaders in the past had led to their killing.
"This has happened not once but many times. My father, his (Bilal Gani Lone’s) father, his (Abdul Gani Bhat’s) brother and so many people at the leadership level (have been targeted)," he said.
Whenever the Hurriyat held talks whether with Pakistan, India or the civil society, it has done so openly and advocated for resolution of the Kashmir issue in accordance with wishes and aspirations of the people, Mirwaiz said.
"We will not allow anyone to create misconception among the people," the Hurriyat softliner said.
It was very unfortunate that Geelani had always taken such an approach which was aimed at creating a divide, he said.
Mirwaiz questioned Geelani’s mindset, saying he had no right to give irresponsible statements and create vicious atmosphere.
"Who the hell is Geelani Sahib? Who is working against the interests of the people of Kashmir?" he asked.
With inputs from PTI
Image: Moderate Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umer Farooq
Photograph: Umar Ganie/Rediff.com