April 2002 News

Jehad will continue: Geelani

23 April 2002
The Hindu
Shujaat Bukhari

SRINAGAR: Refusing to dilute his stand on participation in the forthcoming Assembly elections, the former Hurriyat Conference chairman and Jamat-e-Islami leader, Syed Ali Shah Geelani, said today ``jehad will continue as it is the Almighty's order to fight against oppressor''. Taking strong exception to the line adopted by two senior Hurriyat leaders Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Abdul Gani Lone Mr. Geelani said ``the theory of a changed situation after September 11 is not acceptable to us''. Only the oppressor has become more powerful. Is it the changed situation that the United States dropped five lakh bombs on poor Afghan people, he asked while addressing a function organised to observe the 11th death anniversary of Mohammed Shaban Vakil, founder editor of the Urdu daily, As Safa. Has the situation changed in Palestine where the Muslims are defenceless. Mr. Geelani said the Gujarat carnage was a glaring example of violence against Muslims. Nobody approved of the Godhra massacre and ``I strongly condemned the killings of the kar sevaks and others as we believe that it was a slaughter of humanity''. But a former parliament member Ehsan Jaffery was burnt along with 19 family members. Without naming Mr. Mirwaiz and Mr. Lone, who reportedly had talked about the ``changed situation after September 11'', Mr. Geelani made it clear that jehad would continue. "Jehad is not only to take the gun but it could be a jehad of any kind. Even if we resist an oppressor by words only that too is jehad''. However, Mr. Geelani asserted that a ``freedom struggle'' would not be allowed to be diluted and it would continue till it achieved its goal. About the role of journalists in a conflict situation, Mr. Geelani said ``journalists here had accepted the impact of the changing situation, which should not have been there''. Instead, they should force the situation to follow their line if their goal is clear. However, he paid tributes to the mediamen who laid down their lives in the last 13 years. Bashir Manzar (Kashmir Images), Muzamil Jaleel (Indian Express), Shahid Budgami (Harmukh), S. Irfan (PTI) and Mushtaq Kalashpuri were awarded for their excellence in journalism on the occasion.


Return to the Archives 2002 Index Page

Return to Home Page