'Boycott of interlocutors vindicated by report'
Srinagar: Rubbishing the interlocutors' report on Kashmir, hardline Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani on Friday said their boycott by separatists has been vindicated as the document is like a "dead mouse" found after digging a mountain.
"It was like they dug the mountain and found a mouse, and that too a dead mouse," Geelani said while commenting about the interlocutors' report submitted on Thursday.
The interlocutors had in their report ruled out a return to the pre-1953 position and recommended setting up of a Constitutional Committee to review all Acts and Articles of the Constitution of India extended to Jammu and Kashmir while favouring upholding of Article 370.
Both factions of the separatist Hurriyat Conference had boycotted the interlocutors during their deliberations in Kashmir.
"We knew they would do nothing in reference to Kashmir issue, that is why we boycotted them from the beginning and their report has proved our boycott right. Our stand has been vindicated," Geelani said.
He said the interlocutors appointed by the Centre were meant to be a "diversion" to silence the growing calls from international community to solve the Kashmir issue.
The Hurriyat chairman said the interlocutors' report mentioning that "clock cannot be turned back" made "no sense".
In their 176-page report, the interlocutors called for a review of all Central Acts and all Articles of the Constitution of India extended to the state after the 1952 Delhi agreement which also gave special status to the state under Article 370.
"This does not mean a pure and simple return to the pre-1953 situation. The clock cannot be set back. Instead, the group wants such a review to take into full account the changes that have taken place in the last six decades," the report said.
Geelani also announced rescheduling by a day the May 29 shutdown call after members of the Kashmiri Pandit community pleaded that it clashed with the Hindu Khir Bhawani festival.
"Some Pandit brothers from different places called us and requested that we change the shutdown call as their festival falls on May 29, the day we had called for shutdown," he said adding it will now be on May 30.
The hardline faction had called for a shutdown on May 29, to mark the death anniversary of two women from south Kashmir's Shopian district in 2009.
The two women, Aasiya and Neelofar, were allegedly raped and murdered but a CBI investigation later found the two had drowned.
Geelani said the shutdown will now be observed on May 30, a day after the third anniversary of the death of two women, pleading that people have "no other option left but to observe hartal (shutdown)".