Lifer to Kashmiri youth act of political vengeance: Faktoo

SRINAGAR: The incarcerated ameer of Muslim Deeni Mahaz, Dr Qasim Faktoo Tuesday condemned the life sentence served to five Kashmiris– Lateef Ahmad Waza, Ali Muhammad Bhat, Mirza Nisar Hussain, Abdul Gani Goni, and Javaid Ahmad Khan.
In a statement issued by the party, Faktoo said the life sentences awarded after 18 years of under-trail imprisonment “is the worst form of political revenge being taken by the Indian government from the youth for holding political ideology in contrast to that of the state”.
“The youth were set free by a Delhi court three years ago, but instead of releasing them they were shifted to Rajasthan under the pretext of being involved in a case there. Now, they have now been awarded a life sentence,” he said.
Faktoo said those undergoing life imprisonment in India are released after completion of 14 years, “but ironically Kashmiri pro-freedom youth are being awarded life sentence after 18 years of under-trail imprisonment”.
About Engineer Farooq Ahmad Khan who has been set free by the court after 18 years, he said: “May it now be asked why was he imprisoned for 18 years ?”
“The international community shall take note of the fact that on one hand India brags of being the largest democracy in the world and on the other hand its judiciary is influenced by the government directives and media propaganda in awarding sentences to Muslims, particularly Kashmiri Youth,” he said.
“These sentences are being awarded on the basis of so called confessional statements, statements made by police, media propaganda, and overall to satisfy the religious majority of India,” he said, appealing Amnesty International and Asia Watch to take note of “this targeting of Muslim community by the Indian government, bureaucracy, police, judiciary and media”.