Moderate Hurriyat Conference led by Mirwaiz Umar Farooq has formally split after the rebels led by Democratic Freedom Party president Shabir Ahmad Shah rechristened the breakaway faction as Hurriyat Conference Jammu Kashmir (HCJK).
Shah led breakaway faction started their activities by announcing fresh protest calendar “Hafta-e-Shahaadat” (Martyrdom Week) to observe the death anniversaries of parliament attack convict Afzal Guru and JKLF leader Mohammad Maqbool Bhat next month.
“Complete shutdown will be observed on February 9 and 11 (death anniversaries of Guru and Bhat respectively).We appeal to the people to register strong protests to make the world body know that we will not compromise till goal of freedom is achieved,” a spokesman of HCJK said.
The decision to call for strike was taken in a meeting of HCJK held at their newly set up headquarters at Sanat Nagar. The meeting was presided by Shabir Ahmad Shah to discuss their strategy of reaching up to people. HCJK leaders also decided to march to United Nations Military Observer Group office on February 10 to submit a reminder to the group.
“The reminder is an appeal to return the mortal remains of Maqbool Bhat and Afzal Guru and to urge the Security Council to resolve the Kashmir issue by implementing the UN resolutions,” he said.
This is second time after 2003 when separatist amalgam ‘All Parties Hurriyat Conference’ has split. Hurriyat hawk Syed Ali Shah Geelani led faction engineered a split in the conglomerate after he accused Sajad Gani Lone of People’s Conference of fielding proxy candidates in the assembly elections.
The fresh split comes days after four senior leaders — Democratic Freedom Party president Shabir Ahmad Shah, National Front chairman Nayeem Ahmad Khan, Mahaz-e-Azadi chief Mohammad Azam Inqlabi and Islamic Political Party president Mohammad Yousuf Naqash — raised a banner of revolt against Mirwaiz after he dashed a letter to convener in Pakistan occupied Kashmir Mohammad Yousuf Naseem asking him not to entertain the leaders “who have left the conglomerate on their own”.
Mirwaiz had cited indiscipline and violation of Hurriyat constitution as some of the reasons for not entertaining the leaders who he did not name in his letter. This led to a chain reaction with four rebel leaders going public and accusing Mirwaiz of leading a group of “anti-movement” people.