9 February observes the 10th martyrdom anniversary of Muhammad Afzal Guru, who was hung in Delhi’s Tihar Jail on this day in 2013. The protest to this falls upon IIOJK, internationally denounced by Amnesty International for withholding his right to legal representation and being hanged in secrecy.
His body was never given to his family and is buried in a corner of the Tihar Jail. Guru was credited with being falsely charged for the 2001 Indian Parliament attack and he believed in the Kashmiri’s inalienable right to their self-determination, which he sacrificed his life for.
The APHC general secretary, Molvi Bashir Ahmad, strongly criticized the injustice done to Guru, stating that it is a violation of law and justice. It is essential to recognize and commemorate martyrs such as Afzal Guru, who died for future generations of Kashmir.
The sacrifices of Afzal Guru and other martyrs will endure as a beacon of hope for Kashmiris. These heroes continue to be remembered and revered for their valiant stand for the rights of their people. The hanging of Afzal Guru was deemed unjust and unconscionable by many prominent rights activists. This incident has a permanent blemish on India’s democratic values.
Thousands of Kashmiris have lost their lives in India’s atrocities for seeking freedom of self-determination. But New Delhi cannot squelch the spirit of the Kashmiris with brute force. Martyrdom is an inalienable part of the Kashmiri movement and those that have made the ultimate sacrifice will never be forgotten. India needs to heed the call of the Kashmiri people and recognize their right to determine their own destiny.