While expressing his concern over the “excesses committed by police and army on common people in Baramulla town and Qaziabad areas”, chairman All Parties Hurriyat Conference (G), Syed Ali Geelani said that boycotting elections is the democratic right of every citizen but Jammu and Kashmir is the only region in the world where election boycott has been declared as a ‘serious crime’ and for this, here people especially youths are not only arrested but they are subjected to the ‘custodial violence in police stations and interrogation centers and they are misbehaved, mistreated, abused and insulted there’.
“Omar Abdullah has not learnt any lesson after such a humiliating defeat and he is still following the same policies which become the basic and major reasons for his party’s debacle,” Geelani said.
In a statement issued on Thursday, Geelani, with reference to the concerned citizens of Baramulla, said that the only police station of the town has been formally “converted into the interrogation centre and the dozens of youth, who are captive there, are subjected to the custodial violence. When the families of detained youths visit their loved ones, they are also humiliated misbehaved and insulted there and women are no exception to this behaviour.”
The statement said, “residents of Baramulla town told Geelani that the said police officer after arresting the youth in open markets, drags them and places them naked in police stations. A youth Ashiq Qadir has been tortured and beaten in such an inhuman way that he is unable to stand properly and his beard has also been pulled. The people who came from Baramulla expressed their much concern that during the raids, police loot the cash and jewelry from the houses and the concerned power officer is asking for phone numbers from the women family members of the detained youths and then disturb them in late night.”
It further said, “People have also complained about the said police officer in civil administration which is still unanswered.”
The statement quoting Geelani alleged, “the army personals of Seelu Sopore army camp have made the life of Qaziabad, Sahipora, Mandgam, Khaipora and Kachloo areas hell. Army is regularly patrolling these areas and during this period they are stopping the youth and snatching their Identity cards from them and then they (Youths) are forced to attend the army camp. In camps they are not only humiliated but they are usually beaten there. Due to this oppressive behavior of Army, many students have even stopped attending schools and due to the fear they are not going out of their homes.”
He also condemned the arrest of an activist Sajad Ahmad of Muslim League during a seminar and said that he has been arrested on the behest of ruling party National Conference and he is being subjected to the political vengeance. He appealed Amnesty International and other local non-governmental human rights organizations that they should visit the Baramulla town and investigate the ‘inhuman and cruel behaviour of a police officer over the general public especially the students’.
“They should personally meet the family members of the detained youth and verify and confirm the complaints of the people,” he said.
He said that Omar Abdullah led government should also come clear on the Baramulla incident and asked that why has been such a police officer left ‘unbridled’.