February 09, 2020

Release the Detained in Kashmir

CPI(M) general secretary, Sitaram Yechury, has addressed a letter to the prime minister on February 5, calling for the release of the detained persons in Kashmir, lifting of the  clampdown on communications, restoration of the democratic process and honouring of the assurances made to the people at the time of the accession of the state to the Indian Union.

He said, “It is now six months since the severe restrictions had been clamped in Jammu & Kashmir following the abrupt abrogation of Article 370 & 35A of the Indian constitution through a resolution adopted by the parliament.

“Thousands have been detained from the night of August 4-5, 2019. Many of them are lodged in jails in J&K and outside, detained in their residences under virtual house arrest or in other different locations. These include such people who have served as union cabinet ministers in the past, people like Farooq Abdullah, Mehbooba  Mufti and Omar Abdullah (all three former chief ministers), Mohd Yusuf Tarigami, a four time elected MLA to the now defunct assembly of the state of Jammu & Kashmir, and many others.

“I am writing to you to demand that the detained persons be released and granted their liberty and freedoms as guaranteed by the Indian constitution. The communications clampdown must be lifted and the democratic processes  restored immediately. These have severely impacted the economy of the region imposing unprecedented misery on the people.

“The assurances made to the people at the time of the accession of the state to the Indian Union must be honoured.”

Yechury hoped the matter will be considered by the prime minister with all the seriousness that it warrants.