The Jammu and Kashmir Police on Friday said they have initiated the process of taking non-resident Indian businessman Mubeen Shah into custody and begun attaching his properties, PTI reported.
Shah was detained under the Public Safety Act after the Centre on August 5, 2019, revoked the special status granted to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of the Constitution. The Public Safety Act charges against him were later revoked in December last year.
“Yes, we are in the process of securing an arrest warrant against him after the police station concerned found his post on social networking site was aimed at creating communal tension,” said Director General of Jammu and Kashmir Police Dilbag Singh. The police had registered a case against him in June under sections of the Indian Penal Code over an alleged Facebook post against non-locals residing in Kashmir.
The police chief said they corresponded with the social media platform to get information on the person using the Facebook account, adding that they have raised a request for an arrest warrant on the basis of the evidence collected. The police were trying to get an Interpol Red Corner Notice against Shah.
Singh said that they have also approached the revenue authorities to get Shah’s property details, and declare him a proclaimed offender and attach his property.
Last year, Shah’s wife had moved the Supreme Court challenging the detention order. The Malaysia-based businessman was freed from the Agra Central Jail on December 6, 2019, after the government issued a temporary release order.
A Supreme Court bench of Justices NV Ramana, R Subhash Reddy and BR Gavai had declared the petition of Shah’s wife as infructuous after the Jammu and Kashmir administration said the PSA charges against the businessman were permanently revoked.
Shah, who was the former president of the Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry, had also been mentioned during the United States Congress hearing on human rights in South Asia in November last year. The hearing focussed on India’s action in Kashmir, and Indian-American Democratic legislator Pramila Jayapal had raised concern over Shah’s detention.
“One of the individuals detained without charges is Dr Mubeen Shah, who is the uncle of my constituents in Seattle...this is former CEO [chief executive officer] of [the Jammu and Kashmir] chamber of commerce,” she had said.
Many political leaders, including three former chief ministers – Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, and Peoples Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti – were put under house arrest before the August 5, 2019, decision.
Omar Abdullah was released seven months later on March 24 after the Jammu and Kashmir administration revoked his detention order under the Public Safety Act. Farooq Abdullah was released on March 13. People’s Conference chief Sajjad Lone was formally released on July 31. However, Mehbooba Mufti remains in detention.