A local court in Kolkata has sentenced two Kashmir youth to life imprisonment after both of them had already spent 10 years in jail under Arms Act.
On December 19, 2003, security forces had arrested Sheikh Imran son of Sheikh Abdul Rehman of Krfali Mohalla here and Sheikh Farhat son of Sheikh Ghulam Nabi of Bemina and later they were taken to Kolkata where case was lodged against them under Arms Act. Both of them then aged 17 and 22 years respectively were lodged in Kolkata Central Jail and are languishing there since last 10 years.
On July 15 this year a lower court in Kolkata sentenced both of them to life imprisonment after they had already spent 10 years in jail.
Sources told KNS that defence lawyer Ajay Dutt pleaded in the court that both the accused were innocents and should be released without any further delay. However, they said, after listening to both defence and prosecution, the court announced its verdict.
Meanwhile, while talking to KNS relatives of both the accused said that they were arrested from their residences on December 19, 2003 and later they were taken to Kolkata where they were false implicated in an Arms Act case.
Sheikh Imran’s brother Muzamil told KNS that Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt was sentenced to six years imprisonment under Arms Act while his brother has been sentenced for life imprisonment in the same act “which is injustice.”
He said that they would file an appeal against the court order in higher court soon.
Meanwhile, Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front Chairman Mohammad Yasin Malik termed the decision as “arbitrary.” “Though the duo were arrested from the residences in Srinagar, police showed recovery of arms in Kolkata which is false,” he told KNS.
“Kashmiris have shown the transition from violent to non-violent movement since 2008. But now they are being prosecuted and it is moral duty of civil society of India and world to help them in achieving their rights,” he said.
The JKLF chairman warned that shrinking space for non-violent resistance risks youths to take to violence to resolve political disputes.
Malik said friendship between India and Pakistan had always been punctuated by tensions. “We are not against business and other types of relations between the two countries, but unless the root cause is addressed, the tensions will continue,” he added.