Govt revokes PSA detention orders of 18 persons



Umer Maqbool

Srinagar: Amid outbreak of deadly coronavirus, J&K government on Monday revoked the Public Safety Act (PSA) detention orders of 18 persons lodged in different jails of Jammu and Kashmir.

Highly placed sources disclosed to Kashmir News Observer that government has revoked detention orders of 18 persons languishing in three jails of Jammu & Kashmir. “Of them, 16 are lodged in Central Jail Srinagar and one each in Kotbhalwal jail Jammu and special Jail (Correctional Home) Pulwama,” they disclosed.

With this development, the number of PSA detainees released after the outbreak of coronavirus has reached 65. Last week, the J&K High Court directed the High Powered Committee (HPC), convened to de-congest jails by releasing prisoners on parole in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, to examine the allegations that no detainee booked under the Public Safety Act (PSA) was being considered for any parole.

Earlier, the HPC maintained that release of detainees under the Public Safety Act(PSA) does not fall within the terms of guidelines issued by the Supreme Court to decongest jails.

The panel is headed by executive chairman State Legal Services Authority Justice Rajesh Bindal and comprises Principal Secretary Home Shaleen Kabra and Director General of Prisons VK Singh Presently, former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, six top mainstream leaders and others are detained under the PSA. Several other mainstream leaders including Peoples Conference chairman Sajad Gani Lone also continue to be under detention.

On February 5, Union Home Ministry had informed the Parliament that 389 people are in detention under the PSA in different jails of J&K and Uttar Pradesh.

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