Calendar man documents Kashmir separatists' fight

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The Independent Online

Within the Kashmir valley, many refer to the separatist Sayeed Ali Geelani as "the calendar leader" because of his practice of naming days to be observed by a strike.

This year, Mr Geelani has come up with the idea of issuing an actual calendar, complete with the details of atrocities perpetrated by the security forces over the past 60 years, and apparently they are selling like hot cakes.

"This calendar is to remind people what has been happening to us for many years," one of the leader's sons, Naeem Geelani, said yesterday. "It has been very popular."

Mr Geelani's new product marks many notorious incidents that have occurred since Kashmir became part of India after the departure of the British colonial rulers. It explains the growth of the insurgency in the late 1980s, which sparked a massive security operation by the Indian government.

"Undoubtedly, Kashmiris have given unflinching sacrifices for the movement. But they have failed to document it. Most of them have forgotten the major events and killings as their attention is being diverted to the so-called developmental activities according to a conspiracy hatched by New Delhi," Mr Geelani told the Greater Kashmir newspaper.