A day after rights activist Gautam Navlakha was barred from entering the Valley, the authorities put hardline Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani under house arrest. Geelani wanted to meet the family members of two women found murdered exactly two years ago at Shopian, south Kashmir .
Hurriyat spokesman Ayaz Akbar said police cordoned off Geelani’s Hyderpora residence and told him he was not allowed to move out. Geelani had asked people to offer special prayers for teenage Asiya Jan and her sister-in-law Neelofar, who were found dead near a stream in south Kashmir’s Shopian town on May 29, 2009.
On Saturday, Navlakha was shown a written order issued by the Badgam district magistrate asking the activist-writer not to enter Srinagar and return to Delhi. The order said in case Navlakha insisted, he would be detained for violating the prohibitory orders.
However, Navlakha was sent back on Sunday as there was no return flight available by the time order was served on him.
Lashing out at the state authorities, Navlakha said: “This is outrageous. They are not willing to listen to reason.”
The Opposition PDP termed the state government decision as unprecedented. “Naulakha’s liberty to enter the state should be restored. Even during worst phases of militancy, such draconian measures were not used,” said a PDP spokesman. Economic Times