Expel Slum Dwellers By Oct 20: Geelani Tells Govt28 September 2011
Srinagar: Chairman Hurriyat Conference (G), Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Wednesday threatened to launch a stir the state government doesn’t expel non-resident slum-dwellers from Jammu and Kashmir and publicly renounce their proposed settlement in the state by October 20. Geelani, who chaired a meeting of the amalgam’s Majlis shoora or advisory council today, alleged that, pursuing Israeli tactics, India wanted to expel Kashmiris from their own land and alter the Muslims majority character of the state. “Not even a single resident of Jammu and Kashmir lives in slums and these so-called slum dwellers are from different states of India, who have illegally occupied land in different areas of Kashmir. There is no justification to settle them permanently here and the move is also a blatant violation of so-called Article 370, which, incidentally, the pro-India parties don't tire referring to during elections, and which bars non-state subjects from permanent settlement in Jammu and Kashmir,” Geelani said. “Not only is the proposed rehabilitation of slum dwellers an Israeli-type policy to change Jammu and Kashmir’s demography but even their presence is turning out to be a dangerous social, moral and economic challenge to our society. Majority of these non-state slum dwellers have turned begging into a professional business and also deal with liquor, opium and other drugs; some of them are even involved in prostitution,” Geelani said according to a statement. Asking the government to expel the non-resident slum-dwellers by October 20 and publicly renounce its proposed bid to settle them, the amalgam’s shoora said otherwise 'the matter would be taken to public which will peacefully fight for their land and values, moral and social.' It also rejected Chief Minister Omar Abdullah’s call for setting up a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and demanded that the issue of mass graves be probed by an impartial international agency. “It’s against the principles of justice that those who are involved in the killings in the first place should probe the issue,” the Shoora said. It also warned the government of serious consequences if it doesn’t lift the curbs on Geelani’s “social, religious and political activities.” Alleging that the government was subjecting pro-freedom leadership to policy of political vendetta, the shoora demanded immediate release of political prisoners. Leaders and representatives of People’s Freedom League, Democratic Political Movement , Muslim League, People’s League, Muslim Conference, Tehreek-Wehdat Islami and Tehreek-Hurriyat participated in the shoora-meeting.