Hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani warned on Wednesday that the Hurriyat would intensify its protests if New Delhi refused to accept his five-point formula.
Addressing the media that rushed to his residence on hearing about his impending arrest, Mr. Geelani said people should continue to follow the Hurriyat programme.
Mr. Geelani condemned the killing of innocent people and said the people of Jammu and Kashmir would not be cowed down. But he reiterated his appeal to youth to remain peaceful during their pro-freedom demonstrations.
Soon after the news of his arrest spread, protests broke out at several places in the city despite curfew restrictions. Police fired dozens of tear smoke shells to quell protesters at Galwanpora, Hyderpora, Soura, Habak and Sabzi Mandi. They resorted to heavy tear smoke shelling at Bemina crossing after youth blocked traffic on the highway.
A police spokesman said Mr. Geelani was taken into preventive custody under Section 107/151 of the Cr.PC. “Geelani had planned certain programmes which could have disturbed the public order. Anticipating the developments his plans would have caused, he was arrested and lodged in Police Post, Humhama,” the spokesman said.
Earlier, the octogenarian leader was arrested on June 20 as a preventive measure after violence rocked Srinagar in the wake of the killing of youth in Srinagar.
On June 23, he was booked under the Public Safety Act by the District Magistrate, Srinagar, for waging war against the State and lodged in the Chesmashahi jail. He was released on August 4, after which he called for peaceful protests.
The veteran Hurriyat leader has been calling the shots in Kashmir for the past three months. On August 31, he announced his five-point formula to end the crisis in Kashmir. He asked New Delhi to acknowledge Kashmir as an international dispute; start the process of demilitarisation; release political prisoners; punish the security personnel allegedly involved in the killing of 69 people in the past three months; and end the killings and arrests.
This was the first time Mr. Geelani omitted his demand for a plebiscite under the auspices of the United Nations, in accordance with the U.N. resolutions, and tripartite talks.
He had said if the five demands were met in letter and in spirit, his Hurriyat faction would facilitate the creation of a conductive atmosphere in the Valley. “A consequent peaceful environment will also enable the separatist leadership in the State to meet, consult and consolidate public opinion for the peaceful resolution of the Kashmir dispute in accordance with the democratic principle of right to self-determination,” he had said.