Hurriyat Fissures Deepen, Another Split Hinted
17 November 2003
The Indian Express
New Delhi: The crisis within the separatist camp in Jammu and Kashmir deepened on Sunday with the Kashmir Bar Association, one of the founder members of the Hurriyat Conference, indicating that it would dissociate from the amalgam. With both the factions of Hurriyat in no mood to bridge their differences, KBA would have to rethink over its affiliation to the amalgam, its spokesman said in a statement. He said KBA would shortly come up with a decision over its association with the divided conglomerate. As part of its efforts to bridge the gap between the two factions of Hurriyat, KBA had constituted a committee last month. Its members met leaders of both factions of Hurriyat headed by Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Maulvi Mohammad Abbas Ansari. The committee observed in its report that the two factions were not serious about a rapprochement. The report has been forwarded to KBA general body which would decide whether the association would remain with Hurriyat or not. Meanwhile, senior separatist leader Shabir Ahmad Shah said the crisis within the separatist camp was causing serious damage to the ongoing freedom movement in the state and instead of displaying unity, the leadership got divided on contradictory slogans. Addressing a public meeting at Veerinag in Anantnag district, he said it was the duty of the people at the top to provide effective leadership and respect the sacrifices of the people. But instead of displaying unity, the leadership got divided on contradictory slogans, Shah added.