A court in Srinagar on Tuesday refused to grant bail to Peoples Democratic Party Leader Waheed Parra, observing that if personal liberty and the security of state are pitted against each other, the latter will prevail, reported Bar and Bench. The PDP leader has been charged under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act.
Parra was detained on January 9 by the Criminal Investigation Department (Kashmir) and brought from Jammu on a transit remand, after his release by a National Investigation Agency court. He was then produced before a court in Jammu which remanded him to police custody.
On Tuesday, the Special National Investigation Agency Court observed that Parra is an influential person who won District Development Council polls even when he was in jail, indicating that he could tamper with evidence and influence witnesses if released on bail.
The court said that prima facie, the accused was involved in “serious and heinous” offences under the provisions of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act and waging war against the Union Territory, reported Greater Kashmir. “If enlarged on bail, the unity, integrity, security and sovereignty of the country will be endangered,” it said.
Advocates Mushtaq Ahmad Dar and Arzaan Ahmad, appearing for Parra, contended that the PDP leader is a young budding politician and a prominent party leader who has been fighting against anti-India elements and sentiments.
The advocates told the court that Parra embraced the Constitution and “loves India more than his life” as evidenced by him contesting the DDC polls even when the threat from militancy was substantial. They also contended that the first information report lodged against Parra was based on vendetta sought by political rival parties.
“Political rivalries have become the order of the day,” the advocates said. “Ruling parties are time and again blamed for framing their opponents who may be the greatest patriots.” The court, however, rejected the contention, saying that the case diary showed that Parra played an active role in funding militancy.
“A perusal of the case diary file transpires that in the garb of a politician the petitioner had been playing an active role in funding the militants and had also been demanding arms and ammunition against payment by misusing his position and that of his PSOs [personal security officers],” the court observed.
Parra’s counsels said that the allegation against the petitioner of being an unscrupulous political leader having supported terrorists and secessionist is devoid of any evidence, merit and basis, reported PTI. They claimed that the facts and evidence in the case are being fudged and padded to falsely implicate Parra “so as to please the political masters”.
However, the prosecution told the court that the case against the PDP leader is on the basis of reliable and confidential sources, who said that some political functionaries were misusing their position and have established clandestine connections with different Pakistan-supported terrorist and secessionist organisations operating in Jammu and Kashmir.
The petitioner’s counsel claimed that preliminary analysis of Parra’s phone showed that the accused has made contacts across the border suspected to be his associates and handlers in Pakistan as well as with anti-national elements in the United Kingdom and other parts of the world. The counsel also alleged that the accused has been in touch with a number of militants.
“The bank accounts of the petitioner transpires huge transactions, from where the same has come, it is not discernible, though the matter is still under investigation and the facts would come to limelight with the passage of time after the conclusion of the investigation,” it added.
After his bail plea was rejected, PDD chief Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday compared the Delhi court granting bail to activist Disha Ravi with Parra’s case. “Delhi Court’s judgement in Disha Ravi’s case yesterday that mere allegations don’t amount to a crime is in stark contrast with Special Court’s decision to reject Waheed’s bail purely on the basis of accusations without evidence,” she tweeted.