Srinagar, March 09, 2015 (PPI-OT): In occupied Kashmir, the Jammu and Kashmir Muslim League Chairman, Masarrat Aalam Butt has said that his release from the jail after more than four years was a pure legal process and nobody should take credit for it. Masarrat Aalam Butt in a media interview in Srinagar a day after his release from jail said, “It is normal release. I was in jail for last four and half years and my last PSA had also ended. The court had also issued orders for my release and it was a pure legal process through which I was released.” “If they (authorities) want to politicise it, that is their choice but the fact is it is a legal process through which I was released,” he said.
“Courts had quashed the PSA under which I was arrested several times. But the police would re-arrest me each time I would walk free on court orders. Legally, I was a free man but the government’s policy was to keep me behind the bars. So they would always bring in false charges against me,” Aalam added. “I have been released from a small prison into a big prison…I have been arrested 10 times under PSA since 2008. Jail is like a second home to me,” he said, while terming the incarceration of hundreds of Kashmiri political prisoners as a policy of revenge.
When asked, he said a liberation struggle is a long process and the uprising like that of 2010 should be seen as a major milestone in that direction. “The 2010 movement achieved its objectives. I can’t say there was no shortcoming in that movement, but we should know that we were able to rattle the huge Indian state equipped with men, money and resources. We internationalized the Kashmir dispute. And the major achievement was that the struggle was successfully passed on to the new generation,” Masarrat said.
Did the 2010 uprising bring a sense of fatigue among the people, as some quarters believe? “I don’t think there is fatigue. The freedom struggle is a long path. Nations take decades to achieve that. We are also treading on the same path. People are hopeful and committed towards the cause,” he said. Describing PDP, Congress, NC and BJP as two sides of the same coin, Masarrat said, “The common motive of these parties has been to Indianise Kashmiris.”
Masarrat, whose Muslim League is an important constituent of the forum led by Syed Ali Gilani, said the resistance leadership will sit and hammer out a comprehensive resistance strategy. He said his group is ready to forge unity with other pro-freedom parties on the basis of principles.
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