A range of distinguished Kashmiri leaders, academics and experts from the US, UK, the Persian Gulf and Azad Jammu and Kashmir participated in a webinar to pay tributes to Syed Ali Gilani, the iconic leader, who passed away on September 01, 2021 under house arrest in Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir.
The webinar was organized by the Pakistani embassy in Washington and the panelists included Victoria Schofield, a British author and historian; Colonel Wesley Martin, an American analyst; Dr Imtiaz Khan, Professor Georgetown University; Dr Farhan Chak, Associate Professor at Qatar University; Muzammil Ayub Thakur, a Kashmiri leader; Shaista Safi, a Kashmiri activist; and Javed Rathore, Chairman of the Kashmir Solidarity Council.
In his introductory remarks, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the US, Masood Khan, highlighted the life-long struggle of Syed Ali Gilani for freedom of Kashmiri people from the Indian yoke, saying he was a staunch supporter of Pakistan and its ideology. “He was a resolute ideologue who never compromised on his principles.” the Ambassador said. The Pakistani envoy said that since the passing away of the veteran leader, the risks for peace in the region had increased.
In her remark, Ms Schofield, the British author, said that Syed Ali Gilani was a man of conviction and would be remembered for his determined struggle and sacrifices.
Dr Imtiaz Khan said that Syed Ali Gilani stood for respect for humanity and freedom struggle. He was honest and a man of principles, Khan said. He suggested that a university or a study center in Pakistan be named after Syed Ali Gilani.
Dr Farhan Chak highlighted that “fake” segments of population were being foisted on IIOJK. India through its illegal and unilateral actions has made a mockery of the situation in the occupied territory. He said that rapid militarization of the disputed state had consequences for peace and security of the region.—KMS