In Last 26 years, Masarat Alam has spent ‘19 years in prison’

KL News Network

Srinagar

On Tuesday, Justice Muzaffar Hussain Attar of Jammu and Kashir High Court Tuesday quashed the detention of Muslim League Head Masarat Alam Bhat under Public Safety Act (PSA) and ordered the detaining authority to release him without any delay.

Masrat Alam Bhat

Aalam was booked under PSA by District authorities Baramulla under a case vide FIR number 396/2016.

Justice Atthar after hearing the arguments from the public prosecutor Asif Maqbool and Cousel for the petitioner Advocate Mian Abdul Qayoom maintained that: “by issuance of writ of Certiorari, order of detention bearing number 85/DMB/PSA/2016 dated 01 September 2016, passed by District Magistrate, Baramulla, is quashed with further direction to the respondents to release the person of Mr Masrat Aalam Bhat son of Abdul Majeed Bhat of Zaindar Mohalla Srinagar, Kashmir, forthwith from preventive custody.”

Since 1990, successive governments in Jammu and Kashmir have booked Alam, an alumnus of Kashmir’s posh missionary school Tyndale Biscoe in more than 50 cases and 34 times under the controversial PSA.

Alam, his family members said has so far spent more than 19 years in various prisons in state and outside. In most of the cases filed by authorities against him for his anti-India activities, the court has either acquitted or bailed him out. Presently, he has been lodged in District Jail Kathua.

Alam’s formal induction into resistance politics occurred in 1990 when he joined hands with Mushtaq-ul-Islam, a leading resistance leader along with Shakeel Ahmed Bakshi of the Islamic Students League.

In 1990, Alam joined the ranks of militant group Hizbullah founded by Mushtaq. But his romance with the gun lasted only two months as he was arrested. Three years after his release he co-founded Muslim League with Mushtaq.

Alam according to authorities was the sole force behind 2010 uprising in Kashmir. He taking the command of protest programs issued protest calendars from undisclosed locations. Government had even declared a bounty of Rs 15 lakh on his head in 2010 and he became for a time, valley’s most wanted resistance leader. He  managed to evade his arrest for more than four months and was later apprehended in outskirts of Srinagar in Hazratbal area.

Few days after, Late Mufti Muhammad Sayeed was sworn in as Chief Minister of PDP-BJP government in March 2015, Alam was released after a gap of five years. The furor over his release compelled state government to again arrest him after forty days of his release on April 17, 2015 after he organized and led a rally to receive Hurriyat Conference (G) leader Syed Ali Geelani who had then returned from New Delhi.

There are number of cases pending against 45-year-old Alam in different police stations. “All these cases are fabricated. His presence and freedom do not go down well with the security agencies,” said a relative of Alam.

Alam, at one point of time was considered to be a strong successor for ailing Syed Ali Geelani.

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