Burhan Wani an ‘icon’ for Kashmir’s disaffected, says Omar Abdullah

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Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah on Saturday said that the slain Hizbul’s poster boy Burhan Wani had become the new ‘icon’ for the frustrated and disaffected community in the valley.

“Aftr many yrs I hear slogans for ‘Azadi’ resonate from the mosque in my uptown Srinagar locality. Kashmir’s disaffected got a new icon y’day. Mark my words – Burhan’s ability to recruit in to militancy from the grave will far outstrip anything he could have done on social media (sic),” Omar said in a series of tweets.

Earlier, stating that National Conference Party had always maintained that a political problem needs a political solution, Omar had said that Burhan wasn’t the first to pick up the gun and won’t be the last.

Also Read | Worrying trend of home-grown militancy in Kashmir. Why more and more young and educated Kashmiris are taking to militancy?

“For all Burhan’s social media activity I don’t recall any militancy incident attributed to him while I was in office. Not sure after that,” he tweeted.

Meanwhile, according to ANI, All Parties Hurriyat Conference chairman Syed Ali Geelani and Separatist leader Asiya Andrabi have called for a complete state wide shutdown on Saturday and appealed to the people to participate in Wani’s funeral prayers in large numbers.

Geelani also appealed to the people to hold funeral prayers in-absentia for Wani at their respective places who could not reach Tral.

The 22-year-old Internet-savvy Kashmiri militant was reporteldy a resident of Dadsara village in south Kashmir’s Tral area. He had left home in 2010-days before he was to take the Class 10 examination to join the region’s front-line indigenous militant outfit Hizbul Mujahideen.

He soon rose to become its district commander and figured in the list of most wanted militants.

Wani featured in videos circulated on Facebook and WhatsApp aimed at recruiting young Kashmiri men for terror.

Last month, Wani released a video warning of attacks on separate colonies for Sainiks and Kashmiri Pandits if they are set up in the Valley.

The major part of the video message, however, was directed at the Jammu and Kashmir Police warning them of more attacks.

Reportedly, there was a Rs. 10 lakh reward for information leading to his arrest.

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