A day after vigilantes tried to immolate a mentally challenged person in Sopore, the Syed Ali Geelani-led Hurriyat Conference Saturday condemned the “heinous act” and urged youth to maintain discipline in the “campaign against braid chopping.”
“ The youth of Kashmir must pay heed to Geelani sahib’s call for discipline. It’s important for the youth to counter moves aimed at diverting our attention from the freedom movement and keeping a vigil in their areas to unmask the braid choppers. However, while doing so the youth must follow the resistance leadership particularly the movement’s leader Geelani sahib’s directions of handing over suspected braid choppers to mohalla committees,” the Hurriyat faction said in a statement.
Suspected braid choppers must not be beaten under any circumstances and should instead be handed over to mohalla committees for questioning, the statement quoted Geelani as saying.
“Unscrupulous elements responsible for these heinous acts are tarnishing the image of Islam and oppressed Kashmiris,” the statement said.
Geelani urged youth to maintain discipline and follow “Islamic principles and values” during pro-freedom protests and vigil against braid chopping incidents.
The police have failed to make any breakthrough in solving the braid chopping mystery despite over 150 incidents being reported across the Kashmir Valley since September. The widespread fear and confusion has given rise to vigilante attacks on people suspected to be braid choppers. The government also remains tight-lipped regarding the progress made in cracking the cases with one PDP minister even dismissing braid chopping as a “kind of phobia and hysteria” and another questioning “our collective criminal behaviour” while denouncing yesterday’s vigilante attack in Sopore.