In Occupied Kashmir, Chairman Hurriyat Forum, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, has said that sham elections conducted by India in the territory are no substitute to the resolution of the Kashmir dispute.

In a statement, he said so-called elections in the territory are actually a military operation and a futile exercise for the people of Kashmir.

Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said that the Kashmiri people had always rejected the sham polls.

He urged the people to stay away from sham local bodies and panchayat elections and observe a complete shutdown in protest in accordance with the programme already given by joint resistance leadership.

Meanwhile, authorities have arrested several Hurriyat leaders and activists ahead of the so-called local bodies and panchayat elections to prevent them from conducting poll boycott campaign in the territory.

Indian police arrested the chairman of Jammu and Kashmir liberation front, Muhammad Yasin Malik, in Srinagar to stop him from carrying out the election boycott drive.

A JKLF spokesman said that many party leaders and activists have also been put behind the bars during the past few days.

The APHC Chairman, Syed Ali Gilani, is under continued house arrest at his Hyderpora residence in Srinagar since 2010 while the authorities have also placed Hurriyat leader, Mukhtar Ahmed Waza, under house detention in Islamabad town.

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