On Tuesday, former Assam Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Tarun Gogoi condemned the Centre for charging National Conference chairman Farooq Abdullah under the stringent provisions of the Public Safety Act (PSA). This will allow law enforcement authorities to detain an individual for 6 months without holding a trial. Terming the action as a “blatant misuse of power”, he reckoned that this was a threat to democracy in the country. The octogenarian leader has been kept under house arrest since the day of the revocation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K).
Gogoi alleged that Abdullah’s detention was akin to the violation of the constitutional provisions of liberty and dignity of every citizen of India. Referring to the Supreme Court’s remarks that asked the Centre to restore normalcy in J&K soon, he said that the situation in the state was very serious. He further added that the clampdown on rights and the detention of political leaders had alienated people of J&K and provided leeway to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, ensuring his survival.
“The abrogation of Article 370 and decision to split the northern most state into two parts - the union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh without taking the stakeholders into confidence is contrary to the basic principles of democracy. Such an arbitrary decision in a democratic country like India is not a healthy sign. The BJP government may have got the mandate but it should not misuse its power. It should have taken the opposition parties into confidence," he said.
The former Assam CM urged the Union government to call for an all-party meeting, where restoration of normalcy in J&K could be discussed.
Earlier in the day, senior advocate and Congress leader Kapil Sibal questioned the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the imposition of PSA on Abdullah 43 days after his original date of detention. He also recollected Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s statement on the floor of the Parliament, where Shah had stated that Abdullah had neither been detained nor arrested. Furthermore, he drew a link between the timing of the PSA charges and the Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) chief Vaiko’s Habeas Corpus plea in the SC pertaining to the National Conference chairman.
Now PSA (43 days later)— Kapil Sibal (@KapilSibal) September 17, 2019
Earlier BJP said 92% of people in J&K welcome dilution of Art.370 ; that normalcy prevails
Then Amit Shah in Parliament : Farooq Abdullah neither detained nor arrested
If no danger to public safety then , why now ?
Because Vaiko filed petition?
(With PTI inputs)