Srinagar: Authorities in Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday said security cover of five separatist leaders, including Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, has been withdrawn with immediate effect.
Earlier, the department concerned had issued a formal order saying that all security personnel and vehicles provided to separatists would stand withdrawn by Sunday evening. No security forces or cover will be provided, under any pretext, to them or any other separatists, the officials had said.
They said that other facilities, if any, provided by the government to these leaders were being withdrawn forthwith.
Besides the Mirwaiz, the security cover to Hurriyat Conference (Mirwaiz) leaders Prof. Abdul Gani Butt and Mr Bilal Gani Lone, J&K Democratic Freedom Party leader Shabir Ahmed Shah and Jammu Kashmir Democratic Liberation Party chairman Muhammad Hashim Qureshi had been withdrawn, the order said.
Officials said the the police will review if there are any other separatists who have security or facilities which should be withdrawn immediately.
Union home minister Rajnath Singh, had during his visit to Srinagar on Friday, said, “Some elements in Jammu and Kashmir have links with the ISI and terrorist organisations. Their security should be reviewed.”
The home minister also reviewed security in the aftermath of the suicide attack in which 44 CRPF personnel were killed and several others injured.
Reacting to the official announcement that Shabir Shah is among the five separatist leaders whose security cover has been withdrawn, a spokesman of his party said on Sunday: “It is a ridiculous move. He has been incarcerated in Delhi’s Tihar jail for more than 20 months now.”