Family worried over Shahid-ul-Islam’s health

Appeals central govt to disclose name of hospital he is being treated in for COVID
File photo of Shahid Ul Islam
File photo of Shahid Ul Islam

The family of jailed separatist leader Shahid-ul-Islam has appealed to the Union Government to disclose the name of the hospital where he has been put for treatment after testing positive for COVID, so that they can visit him.

Shahid-ul-Islam arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in 2017 tested positive for COVID-19 inside high-security Tihar Prison more than 10 days ago. Since then his family comprising his two daughters and wife, did not have any clue about him.

"We want to attend him wherever he is being treated for COVID-19," family members told Greater Kashmir. "We are making fervent appeal through media to the Union Government to disclose the name of the hospital where he is being treated."

"We have been told that he was shifted from jail soon after his condition turned critical," his daughters Suzain (18) and Sundas (14) said, adding that they fear for the life of their father.  "We want to go and attend him."

The duo said that the condition of their father, who has co-morbidities, including acute diabetes, has deteriorated after testing positive. "We have made an appeal to Union Home Minister for his release on humanitarian grounds," they said, adding that their father has always worked for peace.

"He deserves every compassion in these testing times," they said. "We are hopeful that the Home Minister will consider our appeal and save our family from devastation," they said. "We want to see him in good health."

Requesting for his release on humanitarian grounds, his wife said that her husband is already suffering from numerous ailments including diabetes. "We are extremely worried about his well-being," she said. "Given the fact that he has been a moderate Hurriyat leader who always worked for peace, we request the government to release him on humanitarian grounds," she added.

She said that she had made requests to the jail authorities to get her connected to her husband. "They told me he can't talk and over 10 days passed since then," she said, adding that she was hopeful that her husband will be released on humanitarian grounds.

Shahid-ul-Islam was arrested by the NIA on July 24, 2017 in connection with a funding case and has since been in custody.

On Wednesday, Suzain Shah and Sundas wrote to Union Home Minister Amit Shah, seeking his intervention for the release of their ailing father from Tihar jail.

"…for the last around a week he has been shifted to some undisclosed location and we have no contact with him. We do not even know if he is alive. The recent death of jailed senior politician Ashraf Sehrai at a hospital in Jammu, a few hours after he was hospitalized has made us even more worried about the well-being of our father," Suzain and Sundas said in a letter addressed to the Home Minister. The letter was circulated on social media.

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