Srinagar: The State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) on Wednesday sought a report from Divisional Commissioner Kashmir regarding the arrests of Jama’at-e-Islami (JeI) and Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) workers in the past three months. Commission Chairperson Rtd Justice Bilal Nazki directed the officer to file his report within four weeks.
A petition had been moved by rights activist Ahsan Untoo who submitted before the court that state authorities had arrested a large number of persons over the past three months after banning certain organisations.
He stated through the petition that innocent persons had been booked under the Public Safety Act (PSA) and lodged in different jails including jails outside the state.
The petitioner stated that the right to life guaranteed by Article 21 and the right of speech and expression guaranteed under Article 19 of the Constitution cannot be curtailed by the mere excuse that someone is criticising the policy of the government.
“The arrest of persons under PSA is absolute vengeance on the part of state authorities,” the petitioner submitted.
The petitioner pleaded that all the detainees lodged outside Kashmir valley be brought back so that their families can meet them. He also asked that respondents be directed to furnish details of all those detained under PSA till date.
The Government of India banned the JeI on February 28 this year and banned the Yasin Malik-led JKLF on March 23.