Some Politicians May Walk Home, Next Month  

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SRINAGAR: If everything goes as per script, almost half a dozen politicians may walk home in November, Jammu newspaper Daily Excelsior reported. The decision seemingly has been taken in the same meeting in which the governor’s administration permitted an NC delegation meet Dr Farooq Abdullah on Sunday.

The newspaper identified the six probable politicians on the list as NC’s Ali Mohammad Sagar, Ishfaq Jabbar, PDP’s Naeem Akhter, Peoples Conference’s Junaid Mattoo and Sheikh Imran and Dr Shah Faesal.

Mattoo and Imran are being unwell. Earlier their party colleague Molvi Imran Ansari was shifted home on health grounds and NCs Syeed Akhoon was also released on the same grounds. Matoo is under house arrest unlike others who are in the Centaur Lakeview Hotel which has been converted into a special jail.

However, the newspaper quoting “reliable sources” said these leaders will walk out of the jail when the state is already active as a Union Territory. The UT is being rolled out at special functions in Srinagar and Jammu on October 31.

“Sources said National Conference president and former Chief Minister Dr Farooq Abdullah could also be released in the first week of November after withdrawal of charges against him under the Public Safety Act (PSA),” the newspaper reported from Srinagar. “

However, no final decision has been taken so far, they added.”

The release of other leaders would be discussed for a phase-II release only after assessing the impact on ground after the phase-I. Already the government withdrew the restrictions on various politicians in Jammu. Devinder Singh Rana, the NC provincial president, post-release visited Dr Farooq Abdullah on Sunday.

BJP leader Ram Madhav, who has been associated with Jammu and Kashmir for a long time said that political leaders will soon be set free so that they can resume their “normal” political activity.

“There is this propaganda that you have arrested thousands of people (in J&K). Let me tell you today that those 200-plus leaders are in preventive detention. Preventive detention is a normal law and order arrangement. It doesn’t amount to human rights violation. Preventive detention in five star hotels with good facilities with TVs and books and all those things is a temporary measure to ensure law and order in the state,” Madhav was quoted saying. “Now you can imagine how effective this preventive detention is. Please, don’t be mistaken that these people will be in jail forever. No. Very soon they will have their freedom. We want normal political activity to be restored in the state. But it has to be normal political activity.”

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