ISLAMABAD: The funeral prayers of veteran Kashmiri Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Geelani were offered in absentia at the capital’s Faisal Mosque and other mosques throughout Pakistan and Ajad Kashmir after the Friday prayer.
President Dr. Arif Alvi, federal ministers, parliamentarians and a large number of people from different walks of life offered the prayers. National Security Adviser Dr Moeed Yusuf, Director General Inter Services Intelligence Lt Gen Faiz Hameed, Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain and other government officials attended.
Syed Ali Geelani passed away Wednesday night at his home in Srinagar at the age of 92.
He was laid to rest early Thursday morning in a graveyard at Hyderpura in Srinagar.
Geelani was buried at 4:30 am Thursday at a cemetery near his home in the main city of Srinagar. Only a small number of his relatives were present, including two of his sons.
Earlier, on Thursday, a funeral prayer in absentia was offered at the lawn of Parliament House here which was attended by President Dr. Arif Alvi, Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani, Prime Minister Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Sardar Abdul Qayyum Khan Niazi, Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Kashmir Shehryar Afridi, and the Chief Minister Gilgit-Baltistan Khalid Khurshid.
Besides, the federal ministers, parliamentarians and senior officials of National Assembly and Senate also attended the prayer.
After the funeral prayer, President Alvi told media that Kashmir issue could no more go on the way India was trying to suppress it rather the Kashmiri people would soon win freedom.
To a question about the snatching of late Geelani’s mortal remains by Indian forces, the president said India had not done this merely to Ali Geelani rather all minorities there were facing the similar humiliating treatment.
Through such discriminatory policies, India was burning a fire within its own which would ultimately annihilate it needing no other to play a role in this regard.
President Alvi said Pakistan could have got Kashmir liberated from Indian occupation but the country banked upon the commitments by the United Nations which unfortunately were not fulfilled.
Prime Minster Imran Khan, while paying tribute to the resilient struggle of late Syed Geelani, expressed grief over his demise. He also announced a day of mourning when the national flag would fly at half-mast.
In his condolence message, Imran Khan said that Geelani had “struggled all his life for his people and their right to self-determination. He suffered incarceration and torture by the occupying Indian state but remained resolute.”
The AJK government announced three-day mourning across the state.
The veteran politician was jailed for nearly 10 years after 1962 and was often restricted to his home after that.
Prime Minister Imran Khan Thursday said as late Syed Ali Geelani struggled for the Kashmiris’ right of self-determination till his last breath, all the sympathies of Pakistani people were with the bereaved family.
He was talking to Prime Minister of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Sardar Abdul Qayyum Niazi, who called on him here. During the meeting, Fateha was also offered for the departed soul late Kashmiri freedom fighter Syed Ali Geelani.
Later, the short-term and long-term strategies made for improving governance in Azad Kashmir and providing relief to masses were discussed in the meeting.