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Police stops Mirwaiz Umar Farooq from leaving residence to offer Friday prayers

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Srinagar, Aug 26: Police on Friday stopped Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq from leaving his residence to offer prayers at the Jama Masjid here, days after Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha said the Kashmir’s chief priest was not under house arrest.

As soon as the vehicle of the Mirwaiz reached the main gate of his residence, two police officers stopped it and asked him to return home.

“The Lt Governor has announced that I am a free man…I am going to Jamia Masjid to discharge my religious duties as the Mirwaiz. Why am I being stopped?” he asked the police officers.

One of the officers responded that a security review was going on due to which he would not be allowed to leave.

Mirwaiz said his rights as a citizen were being snatched despite the Lieutenant Governor making a clear statement that there are no curbs on his movement.

Stepping out of the car, Mirwaiz tried to walk out through the main gate but he was stopped by police personnel accompanying the two officers.

“Please give me something in writing about why I am being stopped. The Union Home Minister has said on the floor of Parliament that no one in Kashmir is under house arrest. The LG has made statements to international media on the same lines but you are here to stop me,” he said.

Mirwaiz said the government is claiming that everything in Kashmir has returned to normal and people were happy.

“I want to join my people in their happiness. Why are you stopping me?” he asked before being turned back to his residence.

Sinha, in an interview to BBC last week, said Mirwaiz was not under house arrest and the police personnel around him were only for his protection.


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