Hurriyat Conference (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq Friday said information received about the jail inmates especially in Central Jail Jammu, Kote Balwal jail, Kathua jail and Tihar Jail is not only “painful but disturbing” as well.
“The political prisoners are not criminals and they are being manhandled by the dreaded criminals in jails within and outside the State. The information received from jails regarding the plight of detainees is deeply disturbing and a matter of serious concern,” Mirwaiz said while addressing Friday congregational prayers at historic Jamia Masjid.
He said the treatment meted out to Kashmiri detainees and under trials in jails is inhuman. “They are being physically tortured and psychologically harassed”.
The Hurriyat (M) chairman said the treatment meted out to the political prisoners is not only a violation of Geneva conventions of the rights and dignity of prisoners but even against basic human practices and ethics.
“Even the visitors and relatives, who come to see them in jails are also deliberately harassed and tormented by the authorities. All this is done in complete violation of the jail manual which lays emphasis on the honour and dignity of prisoners,” he said.
Mirwaiz said the manhandling of leaders by dreaded criminals in jails poses a grave threat to their lives. “Besides, they are being deprived of medicines and medical care. The substandard food items including pulses are provided to them.”
He termed the silence of international organizations over such issues and other human rights violations in the State as very unfortunate. “Dozens of prisoners have already completed their terms but continue to languish in jails. Even when the prisoners lodged under the PSA complete their term, police and other agencies are ready with another dossier to prolong their detention mostly under fictitious charges,” he said.
Mirwaiz appealed international human rights organizations including Amnesty International, Asia watch and ICRC to get a firsthand account of the pathetic situation of Kashmiri prisoners by visiting the jails, where Kashmiri prisoners are lodged, and take up the matter with Indian government. He called for immediate release of political leaders including Shabir Ahmad Shah, Asiya Andrabi, Nayeem Ahmed Khan, Masrat Alam Bhat, Shahidul Islam, Altaf Fantoosh, Ayaz Akbar, Peer Saifullah, Mehrajudin Kalwal, Farooq Ahmed Dar, Muhammad Sidiq Ganai, Dr Muhammad Qasim, Zahoor Watali, Fehmeeda Sofi, Muhammad Shafi Khan, Atif Ahmed, Ghulam Ahmed Gulzar, Muhammad Yousuf Mir, Ghulam Jeelani, Farooq Ahmed Daga, Muhammad Sidiq Ganai, Muzaffar Ahmed, Aqib Ahmad and hundreds of other prisoners.—RK