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Mirwaiz refuses to lead Friday prayers: Hurriyat

This was done by Jammu and Kashmir administration of Maulvi Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, the chief of Kashmir. Comes after days of being ‘free to go anywhere’.

Hurriyat President and Valley Chief Maulvi Mirwaiz Umar was placed under house arrest and reportedly told by the Jammu and Kashmir administration that “he was free to go anywhere”, Friday prayers at the Jamia Masjid in Srinagar. He was refused to lead.

A Hurriyat spokesman said that on Thursday evening police officers visited Mirwaiz’s residence, “he was told that he was under house arrest” and “would not be allowed to go to Jamia Masjid for Friday prayers”.

The spokesman alleged that additional forces had been deployed outside Mirwaiz’s house since Friday morning and the area was converted into a garrison.

The Hurriyat expressed strong displeasure and regret over the government’s latest move after announcing the release of Mirwaiz after 20 months of detention. Jammu and Kashmir officials seem to have relied on their own statements that Mirwaiz was a free man, ”said the Hurriyat spokesperson.

Mirwaiz was arrested in his home from August 4, 2019, when the Center abolished the special constitutional status of Jammu and Kashmir.

Earlier, the Hurriyat had announced that the Mirwaiz met religious leaders on Friday in view of the government’s decision to free him and also gave a sermon at the Jamia Mosque.

Millions of Mirwaiz followers, including garlands, were preparing to welcome the mosque into the compound.

“We condemn this authoritarianism. This comes after a recent comment by the Minister of State for Home Affairs that no house was under house arrest in Jammu and Kashmir. If so, why is Mirwaiz kept in custody? “Said the spokesperson.

Meanwhile, the Hurriyat has appealed to the people to “not lose hope and show patience”. “We appeal that no one should resort to violent protest,” he said.

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