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We should have exposed our father's killers: Lone's sons

By Onkar Singh
January 12, 2011 13:50 IST
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Hurriyat Conference leader Bilal Lone and his brother Sajjad broke their silence on the assassination of their father and separatist leader Abdul Gani Lone, 11 years after his death in 2002. The Lone brothers' response comes almost a week after former Hurriyat Conference Chairman Abdul Gani Bhat created a flutter by saying that Abdul Gani Lone was killed by their own men. 

Speaking to on the phone from Srinagar, Bilal said he had no shame in admitting that he could not muster enough courage after the murder of his father by some miscreants in the Valley.

"I have no shame in admitting that I failed as a son on moralistic grounds. I should have spoken out against the murderers of my father, who was killed by some rogue elements in Kashmir in 2002. The element of fear within me prevailed and I kept mum. It was wrong on my part to do so and I should have exposed those who were behind the murder," he said.

His brother Sajjad expressed similar views. "I know that two gunmen from Pakistan killed my father. Whether they were acting on their own or at someone's behest, I cannot say for sure," Sajjad, who is currently in Delhi, told

The top leadership of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference firmly believes that the time has come to put an end to the bloodshed. "There is a need for introspection among the leadership in Kashmir irrespective of which party they belong to," Bilal said.

Bilal and Sajjad also emphasised that political leaders in the Valley should work towards finding a peaceful resolution to the Kashmir problem by joining the dialogue process.

On January 3 this year Abdul Gani Bhat made the sensational revelation at a seminar in Kashmir that the two separatist leaders Mirwaiz Mohammad Farooq and Abdul Gani Lone were killed by "our own people".

"No police was involved; our own people killed them," Bhat said.

Mirwaiz Farooq, father of the present chairman of moderate faction of Hurriyat Conference Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, was shot dead at his residence on May 21, 1990, while Lone was gunned down during a commemorative rally for the senior Mirwaiz on the same day in 2002.

The Jammu and Kashmir government has held that then Hizbul Mujahideen commander Mohammad Abdullah Bangroo had killed Mirwaiz Mohammad Farooq while a commander of Al-Umar Mujahideen had shot dead the senior Lone.

Bhat said his brother Mohammad Sultan Bhat also fell to the bullets of those espousing the separatists' cause.
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Onkar Singh in New Delhi
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