SRINAGAR: The joint resistance leadership (JRL) on Monday wrote to international human rights organisations – the International Committee of the Red Cross, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and United Nations Human Rights Council – seeking their intervention into the matter of a differently-abled man, Tanveer Ahmad Waar son of Muhammad Shaban Waar of Old Town, Baramulla, who is serving his second consecutive Public Safety Act (PSA) detention in Kot Balwal Jail, Jammu.
In a statement, the JRL, comprising Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik, said that to cover-up its “shameless acts”, the police is trying to frame a specially-abled person for actions which are not possible even for a healthy person. It urged the international human rights bodies to “take a serious note of these gruesome human rights violations”.
“A 35-year-old man, Tanveer Ahmad Waar, son of Muhammad Shaban Waar, of Old Town Baramulla is disabled due to polio and from his childhood has not been able to walk on his feet. Besides this permanent disability, he is suffering from many diseases and is living on medicines,” the JRL said.
“This specially-abled person was arrested by Baramulla Police on 21 September 2017. He was ruthlessly beaten, tortured and humiliated at various police stations and was slapped with arbitrary Public Safety Act (PSA) and sent to Kupwara sub-jail. Tanveer Ahmad challenged the PSA in High Court (Kashmir) which quashed his PSA and ordered his release. Instead of releasing him on court orders, police and civil administration slapped another PSA on him and immediately shifted him to Kot Bhalwal Jail, Jammu.”
The letter added, “Recently he (Tanveer) has been shifted to Srinagar Central Jail for appearing in an examination and it (was there) we came across his story. After his story was published in local dailies on 3 December 2017, police came out with a rebuttal and accused this handicapped person of being the main culprit for disturbing law and order in Baramulla district of Kashmir.”
“Police in its rebuttal has said that the accused was involved in 2016 mass uprising in Old Town Baramulla. They say he decorated his tricycle with flags and provoked mobs. With the help of his gang, he hijacked four trucks that were carrying stones and got them unloaded on Baramulla roads to prevent police from chasing the miscreants.”
“The police statement claimed that in 2008, Hurriyat leader Sheikh Aziz wanted to return but Tanveer yelled at him and provoked him to proceed toward LoC,” the letter the JRL sent to human rights bodies said.
The JRL said it is ironic that the authorities could find a physically challenged prisoner too dangerous to be freed even though the courts had repeatedly quashed his detention under PSA. “No one is asking police and civil administration (as to) how can a crippled man climb up a high tower and hijack trucks and force people to march towards LoC. Sheikh Aziz was leading thousands of people towards LoC and one fails to understand how a crippled person, riding on his tricycle, can force thousands of people to continue with their march, as claimed by police,” it said.
“It is now an open secret that the ruling regime has given police a free hand to frame anyone they like, on concocted charges. In Baramulla district only, hundreds of young and old have been framed under false and fictitious charges and slapped with repeated PSAs and many of them are languishing in different jails.”
“It is our humble submission to take notice of this matter. We are hopeful that your intervention can bring about a positive change in the life of a specially-abled Tanveer Ahmad Waar, and his ill-fated days may come to an end,” Geelani, Mirwaiz and Malik urged the HR bodies. “Please take up this issue at the earliest and intervene to save this young man from the wrath of oppressive authorities.”