India asked to release IOK detainees

Curbs adding to besieged people’s woes

Srinagar, March 26 (KMS): In occupied Kashmir, APHC leader and the Chairman of Tehreek-e-Muzahamat, Bilal Siddiqi, has appealed to the UN Human Rights Council, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and International Committee of Red Cross to impress upon India to release the Kashmiri detainees in view of the fast spread of deadly coronavirus pandemic.

Bilal Siddiqi in a statement issued in Srinagar said that thousands of detainees lodged in different jails of occupied Kashmir and India were living under constant threat and fear of getting infected by the coronavirus. He said that kept in inhuman and unhygienic conditions, these prisoners were at high risk of losing their lives to the deadly virus.

The demand for the release of Kashmiri detainees has surged after a 65-year-old man infected with the virus died at a hospital in Srinagar. The victim, Muhammad Ashraf, a resident of Hyderpora area of Srinagar, was first recorded victim of coronavirus in the occupied territory.

Grand Mufti, Mufti Nasir-ul-Islam, Anjuman Sharie Shian President Agha Syed Hassan Al-Moosvi Al-Saffvi and President of Anjuman Ittehadul Muslimeen, Masroor Abbas Ansari in their separate statements urged people to adopt precautionary measures against the spread of coronavirus.

The Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Federation Acting President, Manzoor Ahmed Butt, in a statement in Srinagar called for an immediate release of its President, Muhammad Yaseen Khan, who is illegally detained at Agra Central Jail in Indian state of Uttar Pradesh since August, last year.

Meanwhile, the intensified restrictions on the movement and assembly of people in the garb of containing the spread of the coronavirus in the Kashmir Valley have added to the miseries of already besieged people. The Indian forces sealed off roads and erected barriers to check all kinds of the movement across the Valley. The chemists and pharmacists said that the restrictions were hampering dispensation of medicines.

On the other hand, the US has urged the Indian government to release all Kashmiri political leaders and fully restore internet services in occupied Kashmir in view of the coronavirus outbreak. The demand was made by Acting Assistant US Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Alice G Wells in a statement in Washington.

Hurriyat AJK leader Abdul Majid Malik in a statement in Islamabad expressed concern over the deteriorating health of Jammu and Kashmir Salvation Movement Chairman Zafar Akbar Butt and demanded his immediate release.

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