Omar Abdullah, the J&K National Conference (NC) Vice President, has been reportedly shifted to his Gupkar residence in Srinagar. The former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, who was shifted to a government guest house ever since the abrogation of Article 370, has now been moved back to his personal residence.
Omar Abdullah, who has not been seen in public for almost six months now, was detained along with other mainstream Kashmiri politicians by the government following the revocation of Article 370, citing 'precautionary measure.' Kashmiri politicians still face detainment without a trial, and patron Farooq Abdullah additional was slapped with the draconian Public Safety Act (PSA) by the Home Ministry. The NC on January 11 appealed to the PM Modi-led government for the release of its top leaders to pave the way for the resumption of political activities.
Nearly a month after the detention of former chief ministers of the then state of Jammu and Kashmir--PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah, were permitted to meet with their families. Omar Abdullah’s sister, Safia and her children, were granted 20 minutes of visiting time on September 1. Meanwhile, father Farooq Abdullah's request to meet his son back in September was repeatedly rejected. Mehbooba Mufti’s mother and sister were granted permission to meet her at Hari Niwas in August.
Meanwhile, Farooq Abdullah, booked under PSA has been placed under house arrest. While there is no bar on meeting relatives and friends, the former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister will continue to stay in his house. In December, Farooq Abdullah's detention was extended by another three months by the Jammu and Kashmir administration. The three-term Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir and Srinagar MP will be confined in his Srinagar residence, which is now declared as a sub-jail. Under the Public Safety Act, an individual can be detained for up to two years, without a trial. Incidentally, the act was introduced by Farooq Abdullah's father, Sheikh Abdullah in 1978.
The 82-year-old Abdullah, who became the first chief minister against whom the stringent public safety law was invoked, has a heart pacemaker implanted and had undergone a kidney transplant a few years ago. The PSA has two sections -- 'public order' and 'threat to the security of the state'. The former allows detention without trial for three to one year and the latter for two years.