After about 13 months’ long preventive detention and house arrest, PDP top brass was Thursday “allowed to move out freely” by the J&K administration.
Eight PDP leaders namely ex-minister Naeem Akhtar, ex-MLAs Aijaz Mir and Muhammad Yusuf Bhat, party general secretary Ghulam Nabi Lone Hajura, senior party leaders Sartaj Madni, Muhammad Khursheed Alam, Abdul Rahman Veeri and youth wing president Waheed-ur-Rehman Para had been put
in preventive detention after 5 August 2019 when the government of India scrapped special status of J&K.
After their release from the preventive detention, the leaders were put under home detention and finally today they were set free. The leaders confirmed that they have been officially been intimated that they were free to move out now.
PDP leader Naeem Akhtar took to Twitter and wrote: “After 407 days of detention I am informed that I am free to move about. Thank you rulers for small mercies while you inflict larger tragedies on our land.”
PDP youth wing president Waheed-ur-Rehman Para who had attended a party meeting at PDP headquarters on Wednesday travelled to Pulwama on Thursday. “I am travelling to my native place Pulwama for a family visit today,” Para said.
Former MLA Shopian, Muhammad Yusuf Bhat said he was “informed verbally that he was allowed to move outside.”
Meanwhile, official sources said that several former legislators in possession of government accommodation have after their release been asked to vacate such accommodation within next one week.
On Tuesday, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs had informed the Parliament that “no political leader is under house arrest” in J&K. However, several senior Valley-based leaders had contested the statement saying many of them were not “getting permission for attending party meetings and family functions.”
Mir raises detention of Mehbooba Mufti in Rajya Sabha
Meanwhile, PDP Member of Parliament, Fayaz Mir on Thursday in the Rajya Sabha raised the issue of the continued detention of former chief minister and PDP president Mehbooba Mufti who remains under detention since August 5 last year.
Speaking with Greater Kashmir from New Delhi, Mir said he raised the issue of “illegal detentions” during the zero hour in the Rajya Sabha when the release of political prisoners in J&K was being discussed.
Mir said he apprised the house about “the way in which Mehbooba Mufti was booked under the Public Safety Act (PSA) twice and continues to be under detention”.
“I told the house that it was complete injustice that a former CM was being treated in such a way. We have demanded her immediate release,” Mir said.
While many PDP leaders were set free from detention since Wednesday, many Congress leaders have been facing “restrictions in their free movement.”
J&K Pradesh Congress Committee president, G A Mir said permission was not being granted for free travel to these leaders.
“There are many who seek movement permission but are not granted the same. This doesn’t just hinder their personal life but even party activities,” Mir said.
When contacted, Home Secretary, J&K government, Shaleen Kabra told Greater Kashmir that “all the information regarding detentions in Jammu and Kashmir was shared by the administration with the Parliament recently”.
However, Kabra refused to accept that there were any leaders facing house arrest. “Whatever information regarding detentions available was shared with the Parliament recently. There is nothing such as house arrest…,” Kabra said.