Peoples Democratic Party President Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday said that she has been placed under house arrest.
Mufti tweeted that the Jammu and Kashmir administration told her the situation was far from normal in Kashmir. “This exposes their fake claims of normalcy,” she said.
Mufti was slated to address party workers at the PDP office in Srinagar, Times Now reported. She was also scheduled to attend a family function at a village in Kulgam, south Kashmir.
The police, however, denied that she was under house arrest, according to NDTV. An official said that Mufti was only requested not to visit Kulgam for security reasons.
“We need lot to make lot of security deployment in the area since Ms Mufti is a Z+ category protectee,” the official said. “...She was only advised not to visit today.”
Restrictions have been imposed across the Union Territory following the death of separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani on September 1. While the curbs have been lifted in many areas of Kashmir, restrictions remained in parts of Srinagar to prevent any violence.
On Sunday, Mufti criticised the administration invoking the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act against Geelani’s family members. The police had booked them under the Act for allegedly draping his body with a flag of Pakistan, according to the Hindustan Times.
This is not the first time Mufti has been placed under house arrest.
In February, she said that she had been placed under house arrest “as usual” while she was trying to visit the family of a teenager who was killed in an alleged staged encounter in Srinagar on December 30. In December 2020, the former chief minister said that she had been detained thrice in less than a fortnight at her residence in Srinagar.
On November 27, Mufti said that she was “illegally detained” barely 24 hours before the first ever District Development Council elections in Jammu and Kashmir. The polls were also the first electoral exercise to be held in the region since August 5, 2019, when the Centre ended its special status granted under Article 370 of the Constitution.