Srinagar, Nov 16: (GNS) Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Friday said the resistance leadership and the people of Kashmir have time and again rejected every election thrust on them with a view to dilute the disputed nature of Kashmir and strengthen and legitimise Indian rule in J&K.

Addressing the Friday gathering at historic Jamia Masjid, Mirwaiz said Government of India can’t stop people of Kashmir from demanding their legitimate right, the right to self determination.

According to a statement issued to GNS, Mirwaiz said people of Kashmir will once again reject the “sham” polls commencing from November 17 in the same way they “out-rightly rejected” the Urban Local Body polls and send a message to one and all that people of Kashmir reject farcical exercises.

Mirwaiz said holding elections has no meaning for in a place where all basic human democratic political and even religious rights of people are trampled are usurped through military might. Where democracy itself is the biggest casualty in such a place what can local or any election achieve, he asked.

He said each day military and police cordons are laid in towns and villages where youth are killed, maimed, thrashed or incarcerated homes blasted elderly harassed and placed under detention, even women killed and beaten, leadership arbitrarily caged and put in jails. Where all power and control flows from the barrel of the gun in such a place holding elections is not only meaningless but a mockery, he said.

Mirwaiz said a strange kind of “democracy “is in practice in Kashmir, at the behest of lakhs of state forces present here with unbridled powers given to them and absolute immunity from all accountability. They can barge into any house and kill anybody at their whim and will and or tie a civilian to jeeps as human shields and be rewarded for it, he said.

Mirwaiz said jails within and outside are filled by our young and old who are slapped with draconian PSA for their political conviction while witch hunt of leadership in fictitious cases is the order of the day.

No one is averse to elections, it is an established democratic practice across the globe where people exercise their choice and decide who and how they want to be ruled but in Kashmir that is not the case. It is used as a means to continue forced rule, Mirwaiz said adding that elections will continue to be futile exercise in Kashmir unless democracy is not restored and allowed to flourish in the real sense. And the first step to that is to allow people of disputed J&K to decide their fate by giving them the basic right to self determination, he added.

Unless New Delhi takes concrete steps to resolve the core issue of Kashmir, people will continue to stay away from every “so-called” election, he said.

Mirwaiz took a dig at the authorities for claiming that elections were for the development, stating that when people’s fundamental right, the right to live, has been snatched, development hardly matters .

Mirwaiz urged people to observe complete strike on November 17 and follow the JRL’s protest and shutdown program announced for the poll bound areas on election days.

Meanwhile after Friday prayers, Mirwaiz visited the residence of Syed Ali Geelani to condole the demise of his eldest son-in-law Ghulam Hassan Makhdoomi, who passed away recently after a brief spell of illness at SKIMS, Soura.

Mirwaiz also offered special fateh prayers for the deceased and prayed for highest standards in Jannah for him. (GNS)

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