Dr Farooq becomes first J&K ex CM to get PSA

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Was under house detention since Aug 5, Congress condemns move

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Srinagar, Sep 16 (KNO): In a major political development in Jammu and Kashmir, the three time chief minister and the political stalwart Dr Farooq Abdullah, an acting Member Parliament was on Monday booked under Public Safety Act (PSA) making him first politicians from the erstwhile state to face the act.

According to wire service— Kashmir News Observer (KNO), the (PSA) allows authorities to detain an individual for six months without trial. The 81-year-old patron of the National Conference was confined to his home since the government revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status on August 5.

As per the KNO, the three-time chief minister’s Gupkar Road residence has been declared a jail through a government order.“Dr Farooq has been arrested under the ‘public order’ of the PSA, which empowers authorities to detain him for six months without trial,” he said.  The PSA has two sections — ‘public order’ and ‘threat to security of the state.

Abdullah, the Lok Sabha MP from Srinagar, is the first former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister to be booked under the PSA. His son and former chief minister of J&K Omar Abdullah continues to languish in Sub-Jails.  Abdullah’s detention under the PSA came a day before the Supreme Court on Monday asked the Centre and the Jammu and Kashmir administration to respond to a plea that the former chief minister be produced before a court.

The petition was filed by MDMK leader Vaiko, who sought Abdullah’s release so he could attend an event in Chennai. Vaiko and Abdullah are said to be close friends for four decades.
 The PSA is applicable only in Jammu and Kashmir. Elsewhere in the country, it is the National Security Act (NSA).

Abdullah’s son and former chief minister Omar Abdullah and another former chief minister, Mehbooba Mufti, as well as several other leaders have also been under detention since August 5, when the government announced the abrogation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status under Article 370 and the bifurcation of the state into the union territories of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh. Meanwhile, the Congress on Monday strongly condemned former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah’s detention under the Public Safety Act (PSA), saying it is the country’s “misfortune” that the leaders who fought for its unity and integrity have been put behind bars.

Congress’ reaction came as sources said on Monday that Abdullah has now been detained under the stringent Public Safety Act (PSA), which enables authorities to detain any individual for two years without trial.Reacting to the development, Congress Rajya Sabha MP and Leader of Opposition in the House Ghulam Nabi Azad said, “I strongly condemn it. It is most unfortunate that a (former) chief minister of one of the oldest political parties in Kashmir (has been detained).  

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