July 2017 News

U.K. Cancels Wani Rally After India's Protest

5 July 2017
The Hindu
Vidya Ram

London: The Birmingham Council has withdrawn permission for a rally due to take place on the death anniversary of Burhan Wani, two days after India raised its concerns about the event taking place. 'We took a booking for a peaceful rally highlighting the human rights abuse in Kashmir. However, we are now aware of concerns raised about the promotional leaflet, and having assessed the material, have not given permission for the use of Victoria Square,' said a spokesperson for the Birmingham City Council, referring to the square at the heart of the city. Indian Deputy High Commissioner Dinesh Patnaik, whose office sent a 'note verbale' on the matter to the British Foreign Office on Monday, said they were pleased that the concerns had been taken seriously and addressed. Wani was killed with two other militants in Anantnag district on July 8 last year, triggering protests across the Valley, following a mission that Indian security agencies described as the 'biggest ever success' in recent times. A poster for the planned event circulating on social media, with a picture of the Hizbul Mujahideen commander, called on people to join the 'Kashmir Rally' in Birmingham on Saturday afternoon that remembered 'Burhan Wani's martyrdom and the cataclysmic aftermath'. India has become increasingly vocal in expressing its concern about Britain's apparent willingness to allow anti-Indian activity to flourish on its shores, stressing how it contrasted with India's own approach to its allies. 'We are concerned that in Britain where such terrorist incidents are taking place, their authorities would allow for the celebration of a terrorist,' said Mr. Patnaik earlier this week.