Anti-India sloganeering in mosques goes down as govt cracks whip
Srinagar, Sept 23: The sloganeering against India and in particular which is pro-Pakistan in nature in mosques across the valley has gone down and the reason – the state government has cracked the whip on clerics and caretakers of mosques which have become the centre of protests in the past two and a half months.
Mosques at several locations were reported to have been delivering politically charged and motivating sermons specially during the Friday congregational prayers, when the attendance is the highest. Most Firday protests occur specifically around these mosques in the valley.
The mosque microphones were being used by persons to play ‘taranas’ (pro-Pakistan slogans), which further fueled the protests in Kashmir that began after the killing of militant commander Burhan Wani.
The intensity of the protests went down after Eid on September 13 but the politically motivating sermons on Fridays had put the biggest challenge before the state government to maintain law and order in the Kashmir valley.
Following this, the state government began profiling of After the state government started profiling of clerics and caretakers specifically of those mosques used for anti-state activities in the first week of September. Following the act, mosques had become calm at most places.
Mosques which had been resonating with pro-Pakistan sloganeering in Srinagar and some towns had become silent after the police brought clerics for questioning.
“The intensity of sloganeering in Baramulla mosques has gone down drastically in the past one week. We can now hear sloganeering in just a mosque or two,” said Mushtaq Sofi of Baramulla in a Tribune report
It is noteworthy to mention that instead of the police, the civil administration was given the job to do the profiling in various districts. This was done mainly to prevent police-public face-offs, which have been high in numbers owing to the unrest in the valley.
“Clerics at several places have been inciting residents to protest. We have profiled them and brought many to police stations for questioning. This has helped us bring peace to the Valley to a great extent,” said a Home Department official. He said the clergy would be profiled and put under surveillance in order to avoid any activity which could whip up passions. He said ‘taranas’ played in mosques had added fuel to the protests. “We have been successful in putting an end to it by arresting the youth involved in it and sounding mosque committees,” he said according to a Tribune report.