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Kashmir: Geelani resigns as the chairman of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat

Kashmir: Geelani resigns as the chairman of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat

After a meeting of the party, a spokesman for Tehreek-e-Hurriyat here said that senior Hurriyat leader Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai had succeeded Geelani as the Chairman.

Senior Hurriyat leader Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai (78) on Monday replaced Syed Ali Shah Geelani (89) as the chairman of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat.

Geelani held the post of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat chairman since the party was created following a split in the Hurriyat Conference in 2003.

Geelani, who had recently claimed that he had turned down an offer by an Intelligence Bureau official of facilitating his dialogue with Government of India, had formed TeH in 2004 after having differences with his parent organisation, Jamaat-e-Islami and since 2004 he was heading the organisation. "I extend my fullest cooperation and honest wishes to the would-be leadership of the organization", Geelani, as per the TeH statement said.

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Sehrai was earlier the organisation's general secretary. Before that, Sehrai had given a miss to executive council meetings of the Tehreek-e-Hurriyat and the Hurriyat as well.

While Hurriyat insiders stated that Geelani resigned citing health concerns, sources said that the ailing separatist was under tremendous pressure after the National Investigation Agency (NIA) tightened the noose around his family members.

Though reports say that the handing over of the charge was due to the old age of Geelani, some say there may be other factors which may have pushed in the change. He was one of the accused in the Kashmir terror funding case. Geelani parted ways from Hurriyat Conference saying that several leaders of the grouping tacitly supported Assembly elections in 2002. Geelani held the position for 18 years.


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