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What arrest? Geelani even goes for morning walks: Omar

February 23, 2011 21:32 IST

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Wednesday asked fire-brand separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani not to make 'false claims' about being detained by the Delhi police.

Rubbishing claims of separatists that Geelani had been detained in Delhi, he said the separatist leader was 'completely free' and even takes his morning walks.

"He has been told to not to leave the city until he records his statement in connection with the alleged hawala case where one arrested person has told the police that some hawala money was passed on to him," said Omar.

"He can go any time he wishes to. Let him record his statement today and board a train to Jammu and catch next morning's flight to Srinagar. The weather in the Valley is very nice," added Omar.

"By spreading false claims about his detention, his only aim was to create disturbance in the Valley, but the people are wise enough and have not paid any heed (to him)," Omar told reporters after his meeting with Home Minister P Chidambaram in Delhi.

The chief minister was referring to the failed bandh call given by the separatists on Tuesday for the alleged harassment of Geelani.

"The police, as I have been made to understand, have told Geelani that he can come anytime he wishes to, but can leave the city only after he records his statement in the hawala case," the chief minister said.

The recently-unearthed hawala trail in the Kashmir valley has put the spotlight on some senior leaders of the Hurriyat Conference, following which the chief of the hard-line faction of the separatist grouping has been asked not to leave Delhi so that he can be questioned.

Spokesman of the hard-line faction of Hurriyat Conference Ayaz Akbar said if Geelani was being implicated in the hawala case, it was an attempt to defame the movement in Kashmir.

Delhi police and Jammu and Kashmir police had recently arrested one of Geelani's close aides Ghulam Mohammed Bhat for allegedly receiving hawala money. Over Rs 21 lakh was allegedly seized from him, they claimed.

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