Jammu: Chaotic scenes were witnessed in the Assembly on Saturday over the detention of a 14-year-old Srinagar boy, Sahil Ahmad Sheikh, and a 75-year-old man from Seelu Sopore under the Public Safety Act (PSA).
As soon as the house proceedings began, independent MLA from Langate Er Rasheed stood up from his bench and raised a hue and cry over the detention of the boy and the elderly man under PSA. He accused the PDP-BJP government of turning Jammu and Kashmir into a ‘police state’.
Following an assurance given by Speaker Kevinder Gupta that his questions will be answered by the government after the question-hour session, Rasheed raised the issue again during the general discussion on the demand for grants of Forest and Ecology department.
While replying to the questions raised by Rasheed, Parliamentary Affairs minister Abdul Rehman Veeri informed the house that the boy referred to by Rasheed is a resident of Palpora area of Dalgate in Srinagar and has been detained under PSA but his age is about 22 years, and not 14 years, as per the information provided by Superintendent of Police Srinagar. Veeri informed that at present the boy is lodged in Kotbalwal Jail in Jammu and the government has sought a report from the jail superintendent to verify his age.
Not satisfied with the reply of the parliamentary affairs minister, Rasheed went up to the well of the house and raised the demand that the government clarify its stand on the continued detention of Hurriyat leader Masrat Alam and slogan-coiner Sarjan Barkati, popularly known as Freedom Chacha.
“The government has illegally detained Sarjan Barkati and Masrat Alam. The slogans of Sarjan Barkati were also chanted by the opposition leaders of NC and me in this house. Masrat has been detained even after court has quashed 37 PSAs slapped on him. Is slapping PSA on innocents a part of agenda of alliance?” Rasheed asked.
Following the ruckus created by Rasheed, Deputy Speaker Nazir Gurezi ordered marshals to marshal him out of the house. He also barred Rasheed from attending the house for two days.
Later, the Dy Speaker revoked the bar on Rasheed after a request made by PDP leader and MLA Chadoora, Javeed Mustafa Mir, who asked the deputy speaker to reconsider the decision as it might send a wrong message that the house is repressing the voices of its members.
Rasheed told media that both NC and PDP are extensions of New Delhi and are working for Indian agencies.
He reminded CM Mehbooba of her promises and lashed out at Omar Abdullah for his silence over the illegal detentions under PSA
Rasheed also demanded that there should be a debate in the assembly on the anniversary of Gaw Kadal massacre. He said that if he is debarred from entering the house for his whole life, still he would raise his voice for the truth.