On Tuesday, the detention of PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti under the Public Safety Act has been extended by three months. The Srinagar District Magistrate issued a brief order regarding this barely a few hours before her present term under the PSA was set to expire. Meanwhile, the PSA of PDP leader Sartaj Madani and National Conference's Ali Mohammad Sagar was also extended by three months. On April 7, Mufti was shifted to her Gupkar Road residence in Srinagar amid the demand for her release. However, it was clarified that her residence had been declared as a 'Subsidiary Jail'.
Jammu and Kashmir administration extends PSA (Public Safety Act) detentions of Former J&K CM Mehbooba Mufti, PDP leader Sartaj Madani and National Conference leader Ali Mohammad Sagar by three months: J&K Admin sources pic.twitter.com/Uf0zC11lWS— ANI (@ANI) May 5, 2020
Mufti was originally detained on August 5, 2019, when a presidential notification was issued making the Article 370 becoming virtually redundant. Thereafter, both the House of Parliament passed requisite legislation in this regard. Furthermore, the region was bifurcated into the Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh. On February 5, she was booked under the stringent PSA. During her incarceration, the former J&K CM was reportedly kept at a government guest house in Chashma Shahi and a bungalow on Maulana Azad Road near Lal Chowk. While her daughter Iltija Mufti moved the Supreme Court in February challenging her detention, the hearing of the matter has been delayed due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.
Reacting to the extension of her mother's detention, Iltija Mufti opined that the Centre was continuously stifling voices of reason since the abrogation of Article 370. According to her, this decision was not surprising and she dismissed the notion that this would end the debate on Article 370. Also, Mehbooba Mufti's political rival Omar Abdullah termed this as a "cruel and retrograde decision".
Stifling voices of reason has become the norm for the current dispensation esp post illegal scrapping of Article 370. Therefore, extension of my mother’s detention doesn’t surprise me. Wishful thinking to assume that by smothering any debate on Article 370, the issue will vanish— Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) May 5, 2020
Unbelievably cruel & retrograde decision to extend @MehboobaMufti’s detention. Nothing she has done or said in any way justifies the way the Indian state has treated her & the others detained. https://t.co/tyxXC9NFuL— Omar Abdullah (@OmarAbdullah) May 5, 2020