Srinagar: Despite the communications lockdown in Jammu and Kashmir since August 4 night, the Twitter handle of Hurriyat hawk Syed Ali Shah Geelani has apparently been active, putting out anti-India tweets regularly.
Tweets from the handle @sageelani_ were largely in praise of Pakistan and Major General Asif Ghafoor, the Director-General of the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). The earlier Twitter handle @sageelani was suspended in June for its vitriolic anti-India and separatist content.
The current handle has been active on a daily basis, and there is every likelihood of it being handled from across the border. The handle reflects Pakistan’s current thinking regarding the events in Kashmir after the revocation of its special status.
The tweets have no local content, which normally should have been available to a Kashmiri present on the ground. Take for instance an August 4 tweet. It says “#IndiaUsingClusterBombs Pakistan we need your help!! #KashmirUnderThreat”. Pakistan alleged that India had used cluster bombs on its civilians living along the border that day. The tweet is a give-away that the handle is being managed by the ISPR, the media wing of the Pakistan Armed Forces.
The handle specifically eulogises and thanks Asif Ghafoor, who is the head of the media wing. The ISPR is known to run fake pro-Kashmiri and anti-India handles to keep the separatist fire burning among the people of the valley.
Separatist hawk Geelani is known not to run his Twitter handles. His earlier account, now suspended, was run by the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC).
Geelani was put under house arrest, as numerous other separatist leaders, ahead of revocation of Article 370 that gave special status to Kashmir, and division of the state into two Union Territories — J&K and Ladakh.