Manoj Khar / Mukhtar Baba
New Delhi / Srinagar: Kashmiri Hardline separatist Leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani was today detained and later put under house arrest soon after he returned from New Delhi at the Srinagar Airport. The Indian Home Ministry has given a go ahead to Delhi Police for registering a case against firebrand separatist leader and few others for purportedly giving “hate speeches” at a seminar held in New Delhi earlier this week.
Highly-placed sources in the ministry told Agence India Press that an advice from the legal department was received that prima facie a case can be registered against Geelani and others for making statements which are seen as an attempt to instigate secession.
According to eyewitnesses, soon after he reached the airport, scores of people at the airport assembled and Geelani tried to address the gathering. A police party present there whisked him away and took him to his residence.
“He tried to address a small gathering outside the airport from his car. A contingent of government forces barred him and whisked him away from the spot. He was taken to his home and put under house arrest”, Geelani’s son Naseem Geelani told Agence India Press.
The sources said the Delhi Police has been asked to register a case, which they are expected to do soon. Geelani, who gave a call to boycott the three interlocutors on Jammu and Kashmir,
Geelani’s speech in New Delhi had triggered sharp comments from the BJP.
BJP leader Arun Jaitley had accused the government of “looking the other way” when a number of separatist groups met at a conference to instigate session and to say that India cannot be one and must be broken.
This, he said, was unacceptable as there was no right of free speech available to break up the country. This was against the sovereignty and integrity of the country and anyone exercising his right of speech in such a manner comes under criminal law.
It is an offence against the state, the BJP leader said.
However, rejecting the BJP leader’s charge,Indian Home Minister P Chidambaram had said Delhi police will take action in accordance with law over the speeches made by Kashmiri separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani and others at a seminar held at New Delhi on October 21,2010.
Chidambaram said the authorities had video-graphed the entire proceedings of the seminar and have submitted them to the legal advisers for opinion whether there has been a violation of the law.
“If it is established prima facie that the laws have been violated, Delhi police will take action in accordance with the law,” he said.
At the convention on ‘Azadi (Freedom)–The Only Way’, Geelani shared the stage with Indian writer Arundhati Roy and pro-Maoist leader Vara Vara Rao among others.
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