Zawoora (Shopian): The family of Muhammad Lateef Dar, 65, is desperately waiting for him to return home.
However, the hopes of his release were recently dashed, when Lateef, jailed since Sep 2016, was booked under a fresh Public Safety Act and sent to Kot Balwal jail.
Lateef was among eight people slapped with fresh PSAa in Shopain.
Lateef family said, he had been detained at Hirpora in 206, while he was returning home from Rajouri. Before his detention, Lateef, a tailor by profession and the lone bread earner of his family, was planning to get his 28-year-old daughter and 30-year-old son married.
“He is neither an activist nor any leader but he took parts in public gatherings in 2016 like lakhs of other Kashmiris, when even policemen and top government officials were seen in those rallies,” Zareefa Banoo, Lateef’s wife said. “If it was a crime, then why are those policemen and government officials, who took part in public gatherings like my husband, out.”
Lateef’s son Sajad Ahmad Dar said that his father was running a tailoring shop and was planning to “get me and my sister married”.
“We were studying and our father was the lone bread earner of six member family but since his arrest we were helpless, and worked in people’s shops or orchards to make the two ends meet,” Sajad said.
He added that Lateef is suffering from multiple health ailments due to which his condition is worsening day by day in jail.
Nisar Ahmad, a neighbour, said that they have no means to get Dar released, “but I request the government to release him, so that he can get his children married”.
“People cannot feel the pain of a father, or get it solved,” Nisar said.
Zareefa said her daughter is working in a private school on a meagre salary to help with “two meals” for the family.
Lateef’s sister-in-law, Shameema Akhter said that police superintendent of Shopian had assured them last Friday that he would be at home by evening.
“We asked him to release Lateef on humanitarian grounds, and he even promised us that he will release and even a delegation of 25 senior villagers went to his office and they were also told that he would be released,” Shameema said.
But by Friday night, she said, they received a call from an unknown number with Lateef on the other end informing them that he is being shifted to Kotbalwal jail in Jammu and dropped the call.
“We tried to contact police to let him to at least take some clothes, but all in vain,” Shameema added.
The family lives in the Dar Mohall locality of Zawoora locality. They said Lateef was earlier lodged in Srinagar central jail, Pulwama jail, Kathua and Kotbalwal jails besides stints in police custody.