Kashmiri separatists on Thursday called for boycott of Anantnag and Srinagar Lok Sabha bypolls next month.
Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Yasin Malik said that participation in elections provides India an opportunity to “mislead the world community”. “Amid 10 lakh (security) forces personnel, the election drama has lost relevance and credibility,’’ the three said in a joint statement. “Allow us to meet people; not a single person will cast their (sic) vote.’’
The statement blamed the government for strangulating the people’s legitimate voice. It added that the elections were being enacted to mislead international community and “India is desperate to justify its occupation and as such these sham elections are being enacted’’.
The separatists said that India and “its henchmen in state portray these elections as a people’s consent and acceptance of Indian hegemony in state’’. It asked the people to safeguard the nation’s sacrifices while urging them to stay away from “these election dramas’’. The three said that through these elections they have always “installed their blue-eyed stooges to mislead world opinion’’.
In south Kashmir’s Pulwama district, Hizbul Mujahideen posters asked people to stay away from the elections as participation in them will be “betrayal of martyrs’’.