Kashmir Bar Association Monday claimed that most of the inmates lodged in Kishtwar jail are under trials and they are facing the tyranny of legal system. “All the under trial prisoners lodged in District Jail, Kishtwar, have complaints against the courts and all of them have been subjected to the tyranny of the legal process which is going on endlessly without any fault of theirs. In some cases, judges have heard arguments but have not passed judgments for years together. In other cases witnesses are called but they are not turning up and the court is not taking any action against them,” a team of KBA comprised of Advocate Mian Abdul Qayoom, Advocate Mufti Mehtaj-ud-din, Advocate Manzoor Ahmad Dar, and Advocate Sajad Bashir which visited District Jail Kishtwar a week ago has said in its jail report.
The Bar team has claimed that, on the eve of Eid this year olice has arrested a number of youth in Kishtwar including, Sajad Ahmad son of Abdul Gaffar, Aadil Aslam son of Mohammad Aslam, Khursheed Ahmad son of Ghulam Hussain, Arshid Hussain son of Ghulam Hussain, Firdous Ahmad son of Khursheed Ahmad who all stated that they were picked up on the day of Eid or thereafter along with thirty other persons and they are in jail since then. They said that all of them are innocent and have been falsely implicated in the case.
According to Bar Team all these youth said that they had filed bail applications before Sessions Judge, Kishtwar, but he is not passing any order in those applications despite the fact that more than two months have passed. They said that out of the accused persons arrested, one is a Store Keeper, and another a Junior Engineer. Another accused said that he is working in Vodafone as an Engineer at Jammu and he had come to Kishtwar to celebrate Eid with his family, but he was arrested by the police and is now in jail. He said that because of his arrest, he has lost his job and his future is also ruined.
The Bar has alleged that the jail authorities are also not producing these accused persons regularly before the courts on the dates of hearing for one reason of the other, as a result of which the trial drags on. “Out of 126 prisoner lodged in District Jail Kishtwar, 85 were ordinary under trials and 41 were detained on militant related activities.
The Bar team while quoting jail superintendent, Muneer Hussain Khan in its report has said that committee appointed by the High Court has not visited the jail though the Court had directed such committees comprised of District and Sessions Judge, District Magistrate, Senior Superintendent of Police and Chief Medical Officer of each district to visit the jails located in their jurisdiction after every two months. “There is no permanent doctor available for the treatment of the inmates most of the inmates due to lack of escort miss their dates of hearing in the courts as a result of which their cases get protracted,” the Bar team said.
“The superintendent of jail also informed the team that though the government has sanctioned and paid more than 17 lakhs to the PHE Department for supplying water to the jail from Semna water point but the said department has not provided the water from the said point to the jail and water to the jail is being supplied from Dak Bungalow, which is insufficient and inadequate,” the report said.