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LELHARI HIGHLIGHTS ‘AGENCY’ GOALS IN KASHMIR

Calls for Pan-Islamism

Amid reports of Pakistan building pressure on militant outfits in Kashmir, the Al-Qaeda-affiliated Ansar Ghazwatul Hind has called for cooperation among various militant outfits operating in the state and a new representative militant council to take consensus decisions regarding military actions against India.

The video released on Saturday evening, the maiden statement issued by the outfit’s new chief, Hameed Lelhari, appointed after the death of the founding chief Zakir Musa — laid down three principles for the proposed militant “shura“.

Lelhari Highlights ‘Agency’ Goals in Kashmir

The first principle articulated by Lelhari is the uniformity of motives in fighting the Indian rule in Kashmir: “The enforcement of Allah’s law in Allah’s land”. The second principle, feeding on the pre-existing angst among militants in Kashmir, is that all military decisions would be taken on the ground in Indian Kashmir “based on the ground realities and strategic interests” while the third principle was the “separation of jihad’s interests from organizational and individual interests or agency goals (referring to Pakistani intelligence services)”.

 Al-Qaeda affiliate urges unity among Kashmir militants, calls for new jihad council in video released on Saturday

Lelhari also claimed that Pakistan’s intelligence services had reached out to the Ansar in the wake of Musa’s death, offering weapons on the condition that the Ansar would not operate without their approval and that no major attack would be carried out.

“The reason for sending this message was, perhaps, that Pakistani agency was deluded to think that the Asnar, after Musa’s martyrdom, could be suppressed and like other outfits, be enslaved to Pakistani interests.

Lelhari said that his outfit’s only intention was to keep the “jihad alive and strong” rising above organizational interests and that “crime which has no justification” at a time “when there are ploys at play to end the jihad”. “When the ploy is to prevent attacks on Hindu armies (referring to the Indian army and security forces in Kashmir) and weapons are being given only to die, being a mute spectator is a crime,” he said.

Militants show angst with Pakistani state for double standards

Increasingly, militants in Kashmir are articulating their angst against the alleged restrictions placed by the Pakistani State over their activities inside India. Since the rebellion of Musa against the HM and the formation of the Ansar and the Islamic State-related militant outfits, the discourse is steadily shifting to pan-Islamism and an outright rejection of political nationalism.

The shift has led to several minor and major differences and friction among militants on the ground in Kashmir. In the most recent incident, a militant of the Islamic State was killed by members of the HM and Lashkar-e-Taiba in south Kashmir’s Bijbehara following a dispute over weapons. The slain militant had defected from the LeT.

Viewpoint

The targeted actions of Special Forces in conjunction with other agencies in Kashmir has started to result in the decimation of the leadership of mainstream militant tanzeems.  This has resulted in a power vacuum which the fringe militant groups like ISJK, AGH, Wilayah-Hind ) are now trying hard to exploit with a different narrative of jihad.  Sources inform that these fringe militant groups are partially successful in targeting Jaish and Hijbul ideologies, by calling them un-Islamic. Defection from older groups and new recruitment to the above-mentioned fringe groups ascertain this theory.

The fracturing of the mainstream militant tanzeems has helped dent their credibility in a big way. The new Emir of AGH, Lelhari in the above video seems to be exploiting this readily available fertile base of pre-radicalized youth by attracting them with a misplaced sense of adventure and the exciting new ideology of jihad.

Kashmiriyat demands religious and social harmony and brotherhood. People of Kashmir should understand these nefarious designs and help themselves to bring back peace and prosperity to the state once again. They should salute the bravery, express gratitude, appreciation and extend support to the state security agencies and their families. One must remember that these people are not fighting for what is in front of them but for the love of those who stand behind them. Kashmiris should reject jihad by all means.

08 Jul 2019/Monday                                                                             Written by Afsana

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