Omar asks govt to review ban on Jamaat
Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah on Sunday said the ban on the Jamaat-e-Islami "is having a major social impact" in Kashmir and appealed to the government to "urgently review" its decision to seal schools and mosques run by it.
The central government put a ban on the Jamat-e-Islami Jammu and Kashmir last week under anti-terror law on grounds that it was "in close touch" with militant outfits and was expected to "escalate secessionist movement" in the state.
"The politico-religious role of the Jamaat (JeI) is one aspect but there is also the social aspect. The recent ban is having a major social impact which isn't being taken into consideration," Omar wrote on Twitter.
The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister said people were being "turned away from mosques" where they usually congregate for prayers and schools with tens of thousands of students and employing thousands of teachers were being "sealed".
"There is nothing to suggest (that) sealing mosques will improve the security environment. Sealing schools risks forcing so many young kids out on the streets rather than studying to make a future for themselves," he said.
Omar said that while the government may take some time to review the need to ban the organisation, "there is a need to urgently review the ban on schools and the sealing of mosques".
The Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) also opposed the ban on the Jamaat-e-Islami.
"The ban is part of a provocative and motivated crusade against a particular community. Political advantage is being extracted out of the prevailing hostile situation by creating deep divisions amongst sections of the society," a KCCI spokesman said in a statement here.
"The onus is on the government to start explaining to the public the compulsions justifying targeting of religious institutions belonging to a particular community. Sealing of residential houses and schools violates the basic principles of humanity and demonstrates the desperation of people after global rejection of their politics of hate, communalism and pernicious designed propaganda," the KCCI spokesman said.
The ban on the Jamaat was imposed days after the Jammu and Kashmir Police had arrested around 100 cadres of the group in the state following the February 14 terrorist attack in Pulwama, in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed.