The Joint Resistance Leadership (JRL) Friday dismissed any threats to Amarnath yatris and tourists from Kashmiris and accused a few New Delhi based news channels of running propoganda against Kashmir.
Calling the warm hospitality of the people of Kashmir a globally-acknowledged fact, JRL comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik, in a joint statement issued here, while referring to the ongoing Amarnath yatra said, “Kashmiri people will continue to retain and nourish this tradition as also the tradition of brotherhood communal amity.”
The leadership said Kashmiri people never compromised on their tradition of hospitality, even in the toughest and trying times, and always played a friendly host, whether to a tourist or an Amarnath pilgrim who came to Kashmir.
Ridiculing Indian electronic media channels for running a smear campaign and propaganda about the threats to Amarnath yatris, the leadership said some electronic channels were bent upon spreading hate and falsehoods on Kashmir.
The leadership said there was no threat to Amarnath yatris from Kashmiris as reported by these “mischievous media outlets” from their cozy studios in New Delhi and these yatris were very much safe in the Valley.
They said fake news, twisting of facts and projecting villainous pictures of Kashmiris had been the modus operandi of these news channels and people of Kashmir and tourists had understood their ulterior motives and nobody was paying heed to their false reporting any more.
The leadership said they want people of India to come to Kashmir and stay here and to see for themselves, the ultimate form of repression being unleashed by the lakhs of government forces, who are “muzzling” the genuine rights of people under “military might” and how youth were pushed to the wall due to the “iron-fist policy” of New Delhi.
They said tourists and Amarnath yatris by visiting the places of their choice in Kashmir, could tell the actual ground reality to the rest of the people across India and also expose these sections of Indian media who had adopted a “jingoistic” approach vis-a-vis Kashmir just to get their TRPs high.
The leadership said some brains had always been working behind the scenes and framing policies to keep the people of India away from Kashmir, to be able to promote false propaganda about Kashmiris and give justification for the “reign of terror” unleashed by the forces.
They said backed by the same interest groups, these news channels were yet again trying to create a wrong impression about the security of yatris.
The leadership said even during the toughest times which included peoples’ agitation of 2008, 2010 and also in 2016, nobody touched yatris and the annual yatra went on without any disturbance and the fact remains when a tourist bus met an accident in south Kashmir in 2016, it was the local Kashmiris who rescued the injured and accompanied them to the various hospitals.
They said the people of Kashmir were on one hand being blinded by lethal pellets, killed by live bullets, and maimed and thrashed while the ‘resistance leadership’ was caged and lodged in solitary confinements in 2016, but the annual yatra went on smoothly and remained a peaceful affair.
The leadership said people continued with their hospitality and played hosts without letting the yatris and tourists feel the pain and agony they were “subjected to by the thousands of forces personnel, who had gone berserk in every corner of Kashmir”.
The leadership said on behalf of the entire people of Kashmir, yatris and tourists should feel ensured that there was no threat or danger to their lives from Kashmiris and that they could perform their religious rituals without any worry.
The leadership appealed to the yatris and tourists not to pay heed to the false propaganda stories being run by a few Delhi-based news channels and instead focus on their Kashmir sojourn without any fear and intimidation.