Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday said the Centre had no desire to keep politicians from Kashmir behind bars unless there was a requirement. He said the decision on their release would be taken by the local administration as his government does not interfere in the affairs of states and Union Territories.
Shah’s statement came after Congress leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury asked the government when political leaders, including sitting member and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah, would be released.
“There is no need to keep anyone (leaders) in jail even for a day more than that is required. As and when the local administration feels the time is appropriate, they will be released. You are asking about Farooq Abdullah. You (Congress) kept his father Sheikh Abdullah in jail for 11 years,” Shah said.
He reiterated that everything was normal in the Valley as school exams were registering over 99 per cent attendance, lakhs of people were being treated in hospitals, traffic was moving smoothly and not a single person had died of police bullets since August 5.
“As far as the people of Jammu and Kashmir are concerned, the situation is totally normal. But I cannot normalise the situation of the Congress. Because they had said here that there would be bloodbath in Kashmir after Article 370 is abolished. But nothing happened,” he said.
When Chowdhury pointed out that there was no political activity in the state and all politicians were behind bars, Shah said that panchayat and BDC elections were proof that political activity was happening in Kashmir. “You are not worried about the people of the Valley but its political activity,” Shah said.