Srinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Friday extended the detention of People’s Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti by three months under the Public Safety Act.
Mufti was among hundreds of people who were taken into preventive custody hours ahead of the Centre revoking the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and breaking the state into two Union territories on August 5 last year.
Her daughter Iltija Mufti, who has been operating her Twitter account, has noted that the petition challenging her detention has been pending since February.
Id like to confirm media reports that Ms Mufti’s PSA has been extended until November,2020. The petition challenging her unlawful detention has been pending in SC since 26th February. Where does one seek justice?
— Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) July 31, 2020
In February this year, just before her six-month ‘preventive custody’ period was ending, Mufti was booked under the stringent PSA, along with her maternal uncle Sartaj Madani, former CM Omar Abdullah, former minister Ali Mohammed Sagar, and former NC legislator Bashir Ahmed Veeri.
The current detention order of the former chief minister was expiring on August 5 this year.
According to an order issued by the Home Department, Mufti will continue to remain under detention for another three months at her official residence at Fairview Bungalow, which has been declared a subsidiary jail.
“The law enforcing agencies have recommended further extension in the period of detention and on examination, the same is considered to be necessary,” the order reads.
Several political leaders from Jammu and Kashmir have criticised the renewal of her detention order, including DMK chief Stalin and CPI(M)’s Yusuf Tarigami.
I unequivocally condemn the continued detention of @MehboobaMufti and other Kashmiri leaders.
It is almost one year since they were taken into custody and voices of democracy were stifled.
DMK stands against the misuse of PSA to silence political opponents. https://t.co/tTzFicR0zx
— M.K.Stalin (@mkstalin) July 31, 2020
Extension of PSA to @MehboobaMufti and denail to release other political leaders and activists languishing in jails of state and outside is unfortunate and authoritative.
— M Y Tarigami (@tarigami) July 31, 2020
Extension of Mufti’s detention comes on the same day when Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Conference (JKPC) chairman Sajad Gani Lone was informed that he has been released after nearly a year-long detention. Reports have said that he has been asked to not leave his house until after August 5.
The government of the J&K Union territory is tackling heavy criticism for lying in the Supreme Court over the detention of senior Congress leader Saifuddin Soz. Soz scaled the boundary wall of his Srinagar house to “prove” that he was not a free man but that he had been kept under “illegal house detention” a day after the government said to the apex court, “He was never detained nor (is he) under house arrest.”
Among other mainstream leaders, National Conference’s Farooq Abdullah and his son Omar Abdullah, have been released from custody.
(With PTI inputs)