Syed Ali Shah Geelani passes away at his home, was born on 29 September 1929, and passes away on 1 September 2021.
He was a pro-Pakistani Kashmiri separatist leader in the Indian union territory of Jammu and Kashmir and previously a member of Jamaat-e-Islami Kashmir and later founded Tehreek-e-Hurriyat. He has served as the chairman of All Parties Hurriyat Conference, a conglomerate of pro-separatist parties in Jammu and Kashmir. He was an MLA from the Sopore constituency of Jammu and Kashmir in 1972, 1977 and in 1987.
He quit the Hurriyat in June 2020. He passed away on 1 September 2021 at his home.
Saddened by the news of Geelani sahab’s passing away. We may not have agreed on most things but I respect him for his steadfastness & standing by his beliefs. May Allah Ta’aala grant him jannat & condolences to his family & well wishers.
— Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) September 1, 2021
One man in Kashmir who over last three decades motivated and pushed innocent Kashmiri youth towards violence, bloodshed and suicidal death path in the name of Islamist Jihad is no more.
Syed Ali Shah Geelani is dead. He was 91.
— Aditya Raj Kaul (@AdityaRajKaul) September 1, 2021
Journalist Fahad Shah tweeted, “Restrictions imposed in Kashmir and internet to be suspended after Syed Ali Shah Geelani passes away.
Restrictions imposed in Kashmir and internet to be suspended after Syed Ali Shah Geelani passes away.
— Fahad Shah (@pzfahad) September 1, 2021
Syed Ali Geelani was born in the town of Sopore Baramulla, North Kashmir, on 29 September 1929. He was educated at Sopore and finished his studies at the Oriental College, Lahore (in present-day Pakistan).
Geelani has been seen as a key separatist leader in Kashmir and Omar Abdullah, former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, has blamed Geelani for the rise in militancy and bloodshed in Kashmir, while Omar’s father and former Union Minister Farooq Abdullah has urged Geelani to follow a path which would “save Kashmiri people from further destruction”.
In October 2013 he was re-elected for the fourth time to serve a three-year term as the chairman of Hurriyat Conference, a faction of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference, which split up in 2003.] He founded the Tehreek-e-Hurriyat party, to which he was separately re-elected as chairman for a three-year term in September 2013.
He has called for numerous general strikes or shutdowns, in response to the deaths of unnamed suspected militants, local militants and death of civilians in Kashmir.
After the death of Burhan Muzaffar Wani and the ongoing 2016 Kashmir Unrest that lasted for five consecutive months, to restore normalcy in Kashmir, Geelani sent a letter to United Nations listing six Confidence Building measures (CBMS).
On 29 November 2010, Geelani, along with writer Arundhati Roy, activist Varavara Rao and three others, was charged under “sections 124A (sedition). The charges, which carried a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, were the result of a self-titled seminar they gave in New Delhi, “Azadi-the Only Way” on 21 October, at which Geelani was heckled
Geelani had appealed to the people of Kashmir to boycott the 2014 Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly elections completely, not accepting the proposals for self-rule or autonomy that had been offered by the People’s Democratic Party and the then ruling National Conference. But despite of repeated boycott appeals, the 2014 assembly election recorded a record voter’s turnout of more than 65% which was the highest in 25 years of history. After the record voting percentage in Kashmir, Geelani, along with other separatists, were criticised by Indian media for misleading the people of Kashmir and for not representing the true sentiments of the Kashmiri people.
Geelani lived in Hyderpora, Srinagar. Geelani has 2 sons; Nayeem and Naseem, and four daughters; Anisha, Farhat Jabeen, Zamshida, and Chamshida.
Syed Ali Shah Geelani fought Kashmir’s separatist politics for over three decades and had resigned from politics and Hurriyat last year passed away at his home at the age of 92. His death has left a wave of mixed emotions over Kashmir.