March 2002 News

Hizb: No one to be allowed to betray cause

19 March 2002
The Asian Age

Srinagar: Hizbul Mujahideen has turned down the Prime Minister’s open invitation to participate in the upcoming Assembly elections, asserting it was yet another “political drama” being enacted in the state. While quoting Syed Salahuddin, spokesperson of the Hizb said in Muzaffarabad, the capital of Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir, on Tuesday that the participation in the elections would only be a betrayal of the mission carried forward by eighty thousand “martyrs.” He added, “nobody howsoever high position he might be holding would be allowed to betray the cause.” Syed Salahuddin, who as Muhammad Yusuf Shah, had unsuccessfully contested the 1987 Assembly election from Amira Kadal segment, described as fantasy the Centre’s claim that the people of the state were eager to participate in the democratic exercise once again. He was one of the candidates of the Muslim United Front, the alliance pitted against the ruling National Conference-Congress combine that alleged mass rigging resulting in its defeat then. “Yet another election drama is going to be enacted but the people of the state have made it clear time and again that struggle spearheaded by them is not aimed at placing somebody in the chair of power and or removing the other from it,” he said. The UJC is an amalgam of more than a dozen militant outfits headed by Syed Salahuddin. Tuesday’s meeting was convened to discuss Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee’s statement made on the floor of Parliament on Monday, spokesperson Saleem Hashmi said.


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