Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Wednesday sought to justify the detention of mainstream politicians in Jammu and Kashmir who were put under house arrest following the abrogation of Article 370 provisions.
Malik, who addressed a press conference today, was asked about the continued detention of three former chief ministers — Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti — and other politicians.
“Don’t you want that people should become leaders. I have gone to jail 30 times. Those who will go to jail, will become leaders. Let them be there. The more they spend time in the jail, the more they will claim during elections…that I have spent six months behind bars…
“So if you sympathise with them, do not be sad over detention. And they all are in their homes. I was jailed in Fatehgarh during the Emergency where it used to take two days to reach. If someone is detained in any issue, if he is wise, he will take political benefit. I am wishing them well,” the governor said.
Omar and Mehbooba have been under detention since August 4, a day before the government announced the revocation of J&K’s special status and its bifurcation into two Union Territories. While Omar is currently at Hari Niwas Palace, Mehbooba is at the Chashme Shahi in Srinagar.
Not just the three former chief ministers, the list of those detained in the state includes an IAS topper, a former Union minister, seven former state ministers, the Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Srinagar, and a number of legislators.
Besides, lawyers, businessmen, professors, members of the J&K Bar Association and civil society were also detained.
(With PTI inputs)
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