The BJP-led central government on Tuesday said only 223 people were currently under detention in Jammu and Kashmir and that no one is under house arrest. However, Valley-based politicians termed the government’s claims ‘lies’, saying many of them have been placed under house arrest for several months.
In Lok Sabha, Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy said the government of Jammu and Kashmir has reported that after the abrogation of Article 370 in August last year various measures were taken to maintain public order which included preventive detention of certain persons.
“As on September 11, 2020, 223 persons are under detention. No person is under house arrest in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir,” he said in a written reply to a question in Lok Sabha.
PDP leader Waheed Ur Rahman took to Twitter and said the government was “blatantly” lying in the Parliament.
“It has now been 7 months of house arrest and 6 months of detention for many of us, since 5 August, 2019,” Rahman said.
Senior PDP leader and former Education Minister Naeem Akhtar said: “There are many categories of lies. Lies, white lies, Data, Judicial lies(spoken on oath), Parliamentary lies: This government excels in all.”
Last week, PDP leaders posted their videos on social media as they were not allowed by their security guards to move out of their homes, saying they were under detention. The government has been maintaining, however, these politicians are not in detention.
The PDP leaders’ predicament is similar to senior Congress leader Saifuddin Soz who has been repeatedly saying that he is still being held in detention by the Jammu and Kashmir administration while the government insists “he is a free man”.
A habeas corpus petition by the 82-year-old leader was dismissed by the Supreme Court on July 29 after the J&K administration said the senior Congress leader was never under detention. Soz had moved the top court saying he had been under detention in his home since August 5 2019.
However, a day after his petition was dismissed, a video emerged of Soz being prevented by security men from stepping out of his house. In fact, Soz was seen being physically prevented from talking to media persons on the other side of the fenced wall of his home.
Meanwhile, Reddy also said after the bifurcation of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir on August 5, 2019, the number of terrorist incidents have reduced significantly.
From June 29, 2018 to August 4, 2019 (402 days), there were 455 terror incidents in Jammu and Kashmir and from August 5, 2019 to September 9 (402 days), a total of 211 such incidents took place in the newly created Union Territory.
(With agency inputs)