14 Dec 2019
Farooq Abdullah's detention in J&K extended by 3 months
Written bySiddhant Pandey
National Conference Chairperson Farooq Abdullah's detention under the Public Safety Act (PSA) has been extended by three months.
Abdullah, a three-term Chief Minister of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, will remain at his Gupkar Road residence in Srinagar, which has been declared a sub-jail, officials said.
The 82-year-old has been detained since August 5, when the Centre abrogated Article 370.
Abdullah's case reviewed by J&K UT's Home Department
According to PTI, Abdullah's case was reviewed by the advisory board of the Home Department of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
The board recommended an extension of his detention under the stringent PSA on Saturday, officials said.
Notably, Abdullah has a heart pacemaker implanted and a few years ago, he had even undergone a kidney transplant.
What is the Public Safety Act?
The Public Safety Act is the equivalent of the National Security Act and is applicable only in J&K.
The law allows for the detention of any person above the age of 16 for a period of up to two years without a trial.
Ironically, Abdullah's own father Sheikh Abdullah introduced this law in 1978 with the intention of preventing timber smuggling.
Detained since August 5, Abdullah booked under PSA in September
Abdullah was among several J&K politicians detained ahead of the abrogation of Article 370.
He was booked under PSA's "public order" section on September 14, which allows for detention for up to six months without trial.
A government dossier listed 27 charges against Abdullah besides 16 police reports, three FIRs, and 13 statements of his supporting Article 35A, which dated back to 2016.
Abdullah's son, Omar, Mehbooba Mufti among other detainees
Apart from Abdullah, his son Omar Abdullah, and Peoples Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti were also detained on August 5, along with several other political leaders from J&K. Both Mufti and Omar Abdullah are former Chief Ministers of J&K.
J&K admin to decide on detainees' release: Amit Shah
Home Minister Amit Shah said in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday that the decision on the release of political leaders detained in J&K will be taken by the local administration, with "no interference" from the Centre.
He didn't provide a timeline as to when the detainees will be released.
Shah's statement came after the Opposition raised the issue in the Parliament yet again.
Letter to Tharoor
From 'sub-jail', Abdullah wrote to Shashi Tharoor
Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on December 5 shared a letter he received from Abdullah from his "sub-jail".
The letter—dated December 2—was in response to Tharoor's letter, dated October 21. Abdullah said the "sub-jail" magistrate delivered the letter to him weeks late.
Sharing the letter on Twitter, Tharoor said Abdullah, an MP, should be allowed to attend the Parliament's Winter Session, which concluded Friday.
You can read the letter from Abdullah here
Letter from imprisoned FarooqSaab. Members of Parliament should be allowed to attend the session as a matter of parliamentary privilege. Otherwise the tool of arrest can be used to muzzle opposition voices. Participation in Parliament is essential 4 democracypopular sovereignty. pic.twitter.com/xEQ45klWCb— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) December 5, 2019