Govt Hardens Stand Against Separatists

Govt Hardens Stand Against Separatists

12 February 2013
DNA
Manan Kumar

New Delhi: JKLF chief Yasin Malik's anti-India utterances in Pakistan and sharing dais with alleged mastermind of 26-11 terror attacks, Hafiz Saeed, is likely to cost him the freedom to travel abroad besides, questioning by security agencies. Taking a grim view of Malik's anti-India tirade that too on foreign land, the government, in a high level meeting held on Tuesday, observed that it was a fit case to at least not to reissue him passport. Though, Malik has spoken against India during his previous Pakistan visits, it assumed significance this time because of tense situation in the valley following Afzal Guru's execution. Malik's passport, which he gets on yearly basis to meet his Pakistani wife Mushal Malik, expires in March this year.It suits the government not to reissue him the passport than to revoke it now, as it hardly a month away from getting expired. Besides Malik, moderate Hurriyat leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq is also expected to bear the brunt for sharing the dais with Hafiz Saeed and may not be reissued passport that has already expired. Mirwaiz's application seeking further extension of passport is pending with the government. The meeting, headed by union home secretary R K Singh and attended by officials from ministry of external affairs, explored various options to deal with Malik but concluded that nothing much can be done against him on the basis of his conduct as it does not attract tough provisions of the Unlawful Atrocities Prevention Act (UAPA) or Indian Penal Code (IPC).There was also a view that some harsh measures against Malik may boomerang given the livid situation in the valley. 'If during questioning we come across something more serious against Malik than what is in the public knowledge than there could be more stringent action against him,' sources said. Reflecting union home ministry view point, MEA spokesperson said, ' Yasin Malik is a citizen of India, and will be dealt as is deemed fit of a citizen of India.'