Senior separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani on Monday stepped down from the chairmanship of his party, Tehreek-e-Hurriyat. Sehrai lost to the National Conference (NC) candidate.
Geelani would, however, continue to be chairman of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) that is a strong separatist organisation in Kashmir.
"In a unanimous decision taken in an extraordinary meeting of its highest decision making body (Majlis-e-Shoora) of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat appointed Mohammad Ashraf Sehraie as interim Chairman, till the organizational elections, to be held late this year", read a TeH statement.
The TeH spokesman said after Geelani's resignation, it was unanimously decided by the participants to appoint Mohammad Ashraf Sehrai as interim chairman till fresh elections are held later this year.
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The Hurriyat hawk said he has remained steadfast on his stand despite testing times of Jails, Interrogations, domestic hardships, physical and psychological onslaught.
In 2017, the NIA had filed a case against Geelani and other Hurriyat leaders for allegedly receiving money from the Lashkar-e-Taiba to fund subversive activities in Jammu and Kashmir.
Geelani, who represented the Jamaat in the Hurriyat, was seen as a hardliner which didn't go down well with the former.
However, in 2010, Jamat-e-Islami (JeI) suspended Geelani from the basic membership of the party over the "adverse" remarks made against his parent outfit in a new controversial biography. He has held various positions in JeI including that of Secretary General. Geelani was an elected as a Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) from the Sopore constituency three time, 1972, 1977 and 1987 respectively.