Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday alleged that she was illegally detained at her residence in Srinagar and was not allowed to move out.
Mufti was scheduled to visit Budgam area to meet people, who are being evicted from their lands and homes, after the administration scrapped the Roshni Act. The police and civil officers cited orders from “higher authorities” for the politician’s detention.
“Illegal detention has become GOIs [Government of India’s] favourite go to method for muzzling any form of opposition,” Mufti wrote in a tweet. “I’ve been detained once again because I wanted to visit Budgam where hundreds of families were evicted from their homes.”
She said the Centre wanted to continue inflicting “oppression and zulm” on the people of Jammu and Kashmir, “without any questions asked”.
This is the second time in 10 days that Mufti’s movements were allegedly curtailed by authorities. On November 27, Mufti said she was “illegally detained yet again”, and that for two days, she was restrained from meeting the family of Peoples Democratic Party Youth Wing President Waheed Parra. The youth leader was arrested in a terror case related to suspended Jammu and Kashmir Deputy Superintendent of Police Davinder Singh.
The Jammu and Kashmir Police, however, had denied that Mufti was put under house arrest, and said that she was requested to postpone her visit to Pulwama to meet Parra’s family “purely due to security reasons”.
Mufti was released from detention after over a year on October 13. She had been in detention under the Public Safety Act since August 5, 2019, the day the Centre abolished the special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, and bifurcated it into Union Territories, and imposed a complete lockdown.
Almost all of the Kashmir Valley’s political leadership, including two other former chief ministers – Farooq Abdullah, his son Omar Abdullah – were detained last year. Omar Abdullah was released seven months later on March 24 as 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 released in July.