Srinagar: The J&K High Court on Monday issued notice to Principal Secretary to Govt. J&K Home department, Director General of Prisons, J&K and Superintendents of Central jail Srinagar and District jail Udhampur on a contempt petition against shifting of Ashiq Hussain Factoo from Central Jail Srinagar to Udhampur Jail.
The division bench of Acting Chief Justice Alok Aradhe and Justice Dhiraj Singh Thakur issued notice after the counsel pleading for Factoo informed court that Factoo was still lodged at District Jail Udhampur.
Advocate Mian Qayoom, representing Factoo, has approached the court with a contempt petition against the state authorities, arguing that the petitioner has been shifted to Udhampur Jail by violating High Court orders and the orders of the Jammu court designated under TADA, which in the year 2003 had directed the state authorities to lodge the petitioner in Central Jail, Srinagar.
He asked for the petitioner to be shifted back to Central Jail Srinagar forthwith and action to be initiated against the officials for “violating court orders”. He had argued that contempt proceedings be initiated against the respondents for violating the orders dated 12 December 2003, 23 September 2004 and 30 January 2017, passed in petition no.185/2003 and 464/2004 and also the orders passed in latent patent appeal (LPA) no. 230/2012.
He had also stated before court that as per the jail manual, a life convict while serving his sentence is to be lodged in a central prison, and District Jail Udhampur being not a central prison, the lodgement of the petitioner in the said prison is therefore contrary to the jail manual as well. He stated that the petitioner is not able to receive proper medical treatment at District Jail Udhampur as a result of which his health condition has deteriorated and is deteriorating with each passing day.
He also submitted that the authorities have “wilfully and intentionally disobeyed the court orders and they deserve to be prosecuted and punished” so that the majesty of law and administration of justice can be upheld.
In 2003, Faktoo, who is the husband of Dukhtaran-e-Millat chief Asiya Andrabi, was sentenced to life imprisonment on charges of involvement in the murder of noted Kashmiri Pandit human rights activist Hriday Nath Wanchoo in 1992. He has completed 26 years, 8 months and 29 days of imprisonment as on 31 October 2017.
He has been serving a life sentence following his arrest in February 1993. A Jammu court had acquitted Factoo in 2001, but the apex court overturned the verdict and convicted him for life imprisonment.