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Guarded by the Enemy


Nov 23, 2010
Guarded by the Enemy

His agenda is anti-CRPF, yet Mirwaiz Umar Farooq needs them to shield him from protestors.

NEW DELHI It can’t get more ironic for the Kashmiri separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq. After all, he needs the protection of the same CRPF soldiers—against whom, he claims, he fights on behalf of Kashmiris—to keep him from getting beaten up in the rest of the country.

In recent times, Mirwaiz has been at the receiving end of protests launched by a section of Kashmiri Pandits and BJP activists. He has been heckled in Chandigarh, Kolkata and Delhi. In Chandigarh, he was slapped by a protestor sitting in the audience. Other protestors hurled abuses at him for his anti-India stance. During a speech in Kolkata, BJP activists targeted him again, waving shoes at him and hurling eggs at his car. The scene in Delhi on 30 November was no different.

Though the Indian media was barred from witnessing this event held at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club, the same protestors were waiting for him there as well. The moment his car reached the venue, protestors lunged at it, kicking it and throwing eggs. The car was damaged before it entered the club premises. The CRPF had to lay a cordon around the club to ensure Mirwaiz’s safety.

Undeterred, protestors burnt his posters and battered his pictures with shoes. Inside the venue, when asked by a foreign reporter, Mirwaiz called these protests “undemocratic”. The BJP’s youth wing has vowed to continue these attacks wherever he goes. He is scheduled to be in Lucknow and Hyderabad soon. The eggs, it seems, will follow him there as well.
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