Govt lets question of AFSPA pass, explains PSA procedure

Srinagar: On the repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), the government said on Thursday that “The need and desirability of revocation of AFSPA in various areas of the state requires critical review of the security situation and other relevant factors.”
Thus deflecting the question posed by National Conference legislators in the state assembly, the government went on to reply to the other questions asked by them.
To one of them it informed that since January 2014, the state police arrested a total of 240 persons under the Public Safety Act (PSA) and the Prevention of Illicit Traffic in Narcotics and Drugs Act.
Replying to a clubbed question posed by NC legislators Shahnaz Ganai, Showkat Hussain Ganie and Bashir Ahmad Veeri, the government told the assembly that of the 240 persons arrested, 153 were released and the remaining 87 were still under detention.
The government informed that 1,075 FIRs under the PSA and the Drugs Act were lodged during the period January 2014-June 2016.
The government withheld the names of those booked under these two laws, saying, “It would not be feasible to disclose the names of these detainees in view of security considerations.”
In reply to another question on what criteria was being adopted to book a person under PSA, the government said that detention orders were generally passed by the District Magistrate after considering the dossier prepared by the Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) or Superintendent of Police (SP).
“Keeping in view the facts and circumstances of the case and after satisfying himself about the adequacy of the material placed before him and the activities of the subject, the DM concerned passes the order under section (8)(1) (a)(i) or (a-1) of the Act,” the government’s reply said.
The reply informed that the DM’s order has to be approved by the government within 12 days in terms of sub-section (4) of Section 8 of the Act. If approved, the case is then forwarded to the State Advisory Board constituted for the purpose for its opinion.
About the detention of persons during the summer agitation of 2010, the government said, “During the year 2010, 182 persons involved in stone-pelting were detained under the PSA and all of them were released after completion/ quashing / revocation of detention term up to the end of 2014.”