Congress chief Saifuddin Soz, 82, on Thursday mentioned he has been underneath detention since August final yr when Jammu & Kashmir was divested of its particular standing and accused the Union Territory administration of mendacity to the Supreme Court docket on Wednesday that he was “by no means detained nor underneath home arrest”. The court docket on Wednesday closed a habeas corpus petition filed by Soz’s spouse after the administration assured it he was not underneath detention.
“I’m [under] home arrest since August 5, 2019, and in the present day [Thursday] press individuals got here and so they noticed police not permitting me to exit…they [administration] shamelessly informed the SC [Supreme Court] that I used to be a free man. It’s so tragic. The SC should really feel the need of asking the central authorities why it was informed lies…My lawyer will strategy a court docket right here about how a lie was informed within the Supreme Court docket,” Soz informed HT over telephone.
Soz, who’s a five-time member of Parliament and a former Union minister, mentioned this after a video went viral on social media exhibiting safety personnel pulling him away from the boundary wall of his Srinagar home when he was chatting with journalists. Quickly after, Soz, who can’t be seen any longer, is heard telling the one that pulled him away to not contact him.
Soz added he has during the last yr left his home to go to his ailing sister and to journey to Delhi in September and December for therapy. “Every time I went out of my premises since August 5, 2019, I needed to receive permission from the federal government,” he mentioned. He added further safety personnel had been deployed at his home. “I requested one in every of them ‘how can he contact me. That is my home and also you exit’. Have a look at the high-handedness of that policeman; he was in civvies and I didn’t know him. However what can the Kashmir police do, they’re additionally underneath stress.”
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A whole lot of individuals, together with three former chief ministers, have been detained in August final yr as a part of measures to stop protests towards the nullification of the Structure’s Article 370 that ended Jammu & Kashmir’s particular standing. A communications blackout and a lockdown have been imposed however a lot of the restrictions have since been eased even because the cell web stays restricted. Two former chief ministers Farooq Abdullah and Omar Abdullah have been launched in March whereas Mehbooba Mufti stays underneath detention.
Jammu & Kashmir lieutenant governor GC Murmu didn’t reply to questions on Soz’s detention.
The Jammu and Kashmir administration’s spokesperson and principal secretary, Rohit Kansal, reiterated the federal government’s stand that Soz was by no means underneath detention or arrest. “…He has been to Delhi twice- in October and December. Free to go wherever he likes with typical safety drill. No query of mendacity in Hon SC @diprjk,” Kansal posted on Twitter.
Congress chief Rahul Gandhi tweeted Soz’s video and hit out on the authorities over the previous Union minister’s unlawful detention. “The unlawful detention of political leaders with completely no foundation damages the material of our nation. Mr Soz should be launched without delay.”
Congress lawmaker Shashi Tharoor, too, shared the video and termed Soz’s therapy a “nationwide shame”.
Omar Abdullah mentioned 15 leaders of his Nationwide Convention have been additionally illegally detained like Soz. “Soz Sahib’s plight is just not distinctive. @JKNC_has gone to court docket as a result of greater than 15 of our colleagues are equally illegally detained & I’ve little doubt the administration will declare they aren’t detained…”
Mufti’s daughter, Iltija Mufti, mentioned Soz was manhandled for chatting with media. “I confronted the identical scenario in January once I tried to handle media at my home in Srinagar.”
Bharatiya Janata Occasion spokesman Anil Gupta questioned the video’s authenticity and added if the administration has mentioned Soz is just not underneath detention, then he’s free. “Soz is enjoying the sufferer card to achieve sympathy.’’