Srinagar, Jan 5: Three former chief ministers and over 20 leaders of different political parties completed six months in detention in Kashmir valley since August 5, when the Centre had scrapped the provision of Article 370 of the Constitution that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir.
Three former CMs Dr Farooq Abdullah, his son Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti were put under preventive detention under Section 170 since August 5.
However, Dr Abdullah, who is Member of Parliament (MP) from Srinagar constituency, was later booked under Public Safety Act (PSA) for three months after his detention under Section 170 (preventive custody) was challenged by MDMK chief Vaikoo, who wanted him (Dr Abdullah) to attend a function in his home state Tamil Nadu. Dr Abdullah’s PSA detention was later extended for another three months.
The other leaders under preventive detention included former ministers and legislators. The detenues also included Peoples Conference (PC) chairman Sajjad Gani Lone, who was a minister in the PDP-BJP coalition government from the quota of the saffron party. Former IAS topper-turned-politician Dr Shah Faesal and former minister Naeem Akhtar also remained under detention. Surprisingly, no detained leader has challenged his detention.
Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti and other leaders have completed their six months detention under Section 170 today. Interestingly under this Section, a person can be detained for six months only. It needs to be seen if their detention will be extended under any new section or they too will be booked under PSA.
However, for the past two months about 25 leaders, including former ministers and legislators, have been released by the authorities after they reportedly gave an undertaking that they will not question scrapping of special status of the state. A number of these leaders after their release met Lt Governor G C Murmu and delegations of MPs from different countries without prior permission from their parties.
Large number of separatist leaders, including spokespersons of both the factions of the Hurriyat Conference (HC), JKLF chief Mohammad Yaseen Malik, Democratic Freedom Party (DPF) Shabir Ahmad Shah besides Kashmir Bar Council (KBC) Mian Abdul Qayoum also remained under detention. Majority of them are detained in Delhi’s jail and other state prisons. (UNI)