September 19, 2020
Saugata Roy makes Zero Hour mention on the release of political leaders and journalists, and the restoration of 4G services in Jammu and Kashmir
Sir, the situation in Jammu and Kashmir after one year of the abrogation of Article 370 is causing concern. Thirty elected members of the last elected Jammu and Kashmir Assembly were arrested. Seven of them, including former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, have not been released. Forty political leaders of mainstream political parties were arrested, and half of them have not been released. Eighteen journalists were arrested and intimidated and some were allegedly physically assaulted by the police. 2G mobile internet service was suspended on 84 occasions, while 4G service has still not been restored.
The State Human Rights Commission has been closed down, along with seven other commissions, including the State Commission for the Protection of Women and Child Rights. The prisons in J&K have become COVID-19 hotspots. In Anantnag, 96 prisoners, mostly undertrials, tested positive for COVID-19; almost half the population of undertrials is COVID-19 positive.
The arbitrary internet shutdown is harming the education of students. Access to education has become limited. Some of the leaders who were released have had to sign bonds, saying the release was conditional to their maintaining silence on political issues.
Dr Farooq Abdullah is here after his release. I demand that all political leaders be released. Two hundred thirty political leaders are still in detention.