Srinagar: Nine months and twelve days have passed since Haleema Bano, 48, has seen her husband Ghulam Nabi Gojri, 51, currently in Kot Balwal Jail in Jammu under a fourth PSA detention.
Arrested and sent to Kot Balwal Jail in November 2016, Gojri, a labourer by profession, is yet to see his wife, son, and minor daughter who live in two rooms at Qadeempora Sopore and cannot afford to travel to Jammu.
“I make sure that I attend the case (hearing) as there is no one back home. I have a minor daughter and one son who is working at a butcher shop in Srinagar, earning Rs 5,000 a month. It is hard for me to skip a day for court hearings as I go to clean people’s houses where I earn some money to sustain my family. My husband has been falsely implicated in new cases. There is no justice for us poor,” said Haleema Bano to Kashmir Reader.
Covering a distance of 49.5 kilometres from Qadeem Pora Sopore to Srinagar, Bano comes to the High Court to attend the case hearings of her husband.
As per the police dossier on Gojri, no new charges have been filed against him and he remains under detention on previous FIRs lodged in 2016. A fresh detention order under the draconian Public Safety Act (PSA) was passed against him on March 17 this year. It expired after six months. Gojri is in jail now illegally.
“It is an illegal detention. Why is the state harassing us and why are they slapping so many PSAs for the same offence?” said Bano.
Bano is contesting her husband’s case through Advocate Mir Shafkat Hussain, who told Kashmir Reader, “From one jail they (detainees) are transferred to another and the ground of detention is kept the same. A person is being punished for an offence that he has already been punished for. This is what the state is doing in disregard of laws. It has become a cruel joke where they play with lives of innocents.”
“This will deepen the wound of alienation, and by doing this the state will get nothing,” Hussain said. “Everybody wants peace but with these tactics, it is far from reality.”
The court quashed the earlier three PSAs against Gojri but has reserved judgement on the fourth one. The police dossier says that Gojri is affiliated with the Hurriyat (Geelani) and has been actively instigating youth against the state and is a threat to peace and harmony. The dossier has been the same throughout all the detention orders.
Bano said she was hopeful that the fourth PSA will be quashed in the coming days and her children will be able to celebrate Eid with their father.