The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Monday released five Kashmiri political leaders from detention, Scroll.in has learnt. The five had been detained at the MLA Hostel in Srinagar since August 5, when the Indian government revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370, bifurcated the state into two Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, and imposed a curfew.
The five released leaders were identified as Sheikh Ishfaq Jabbar and Ghulam Nabi from the National Conference, and Yasir Reshi, Bashir Mir and Zahoor Mir from the Peoples Democratic Party.
Now, 25 political leaders of various parties in Kashmir remain in detention. Among these are three former chief ministers of the state – National Conference President Farooq Abdullah, whose detention under the Public Safety Act was extended by three months on December 15, his son Omar Abdullah and Peoples Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti.
On November 25, the Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory administration had released two political leaders – Dilawar Mir of the PDP and Ghulam Hassan Mir of the Democratic Party Nationalist.
There has been increasing international pressure on India to restore normalcy in Kashmir. On October 24, the United States asked India to provide a road map on the restoration of normalcy in the Union Territory, including the immediate release of all political detainees.
Apart from mainstream Kashmiri politicians, the Indian government has also put separatists like moderate Hurriyat Conference Chairperson Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chief Yasin Malik under detention. Earlier on Monday, Malik, who is interned in Tihar Jail in Delhi, appeared before a special court via video conferencing, in a 1989 case related to the killing of Indian Air Force personnel and abduction of late Peoples Democratic Party chief Mufti Muhammad Sayeed’s daughter Dr Rubiya Sayeed, the Kashmir News Service reported.