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Tuesday, September 28, 2021

FIR over draping of Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s body in ‘Pakistan flag’

“Police have registered an FIR for unlawful activities on September 1 night at Geelani's house after his death," a senior police officer told The Indian Express.

Written by Bashaarat Masood | Srinagar |
Updated: September 5, 2021 7:24:33 am
Kashmiri separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani died late Wednesday, Sept, 1, 2021. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri/ File)

Jammu and Kashmir Police has registered an FIR against unnamed persons after a video emerged on social media showing separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s body purportedly wrapped in Pakistani flag, and “anti-national” slogans allegedly raised after his death, officials said on Saturday.

“Police have registered an FIR for unlawful activities on September 1 night at Geelani’s house after his death,” a senior police officer told The Indian Express.

Police sources said the FIR (number 277/2021) was registered by Budgam police. They said the anti-terror Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) has been invoked against the unnamed accused.

The separatist patriarch died on Wednesday night at his residence in Srinagar’s Hyderpora area.

After his death, women at his residence reportedly scuffled with police personnel when they barged in, allegedly snatched Geelani’s body from the family, and buried it — in the absence of family members, including his two sons.

The police have said they did not snatch the body but “facilitated” the family to take it to the graveyard, which is about 300 metres from the residence.

After Geelani’s death, the Valley was locked down and internet and cellular services were snapped to prevent a public funeral and protests over his death.

When wired internet services were restored on Friday, several videos emerged on social media, one of which showed Geelani’s body purportedly wrapped in a Pakistan flag. Another showed women in the house purportedly resisting police’s move to take away Geelani’s body.

In June, when Mohammad Ashraf Sehrai, senior Hurriyat leader who was a close confidant of Geelani, died in custody in a Jammu jail, where he was detained under Public Safety Act, police had registered an FIR against his sons and some participants in the funeral for allegedly raising “anti-national slogans”. Sehrai’s sons were later detained.

Meanwhile, wired internet services and voice calls were restored on Friday night and restrictions on civilian movement was lifted on Saturday. But the Valley observed a complete shutdown on Saturday to mourn Geelani’s death. All business establishments in the Valley remained closed and public transport remained off road.

On Saturday, PTI reported that Kashmir IGP Vijay Kumar has appealed to the general public not to pay any heed to rumours being maliciously spread by anti-national elements, especially from across the border, with an objective to disturb the peaceful atmosphere in the Valley. “Today, the situation across Kashmir Valley remained peaceful and no untoward incident was reported from anywhere except one minor pelting in Narkara area of Budgam,” a police spokesperson said.

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