Inside Kashmir

Para’s persecution is emblematic of situation Kashmiri politicians are in: Mehbooba

Srinagar: Asserting that PDP leader Waheed-ur-Rehman Para’s ‘persecution by the Indian government is emblematic of the situation that Kashmiri politicians find themselves in today’, former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti said that his last hope now rests on the justice system.

Ms Mehbooba, who is president of PDP, alleged that Kashmiri politicians are on one hand disliked and mistrusted by people in J&K for their faith in Indian constitution and on the other hand they are punished by GOI for not toeing their line.

“Waheed’s persecution by the Indian government is emblematic of the situation that Kashmiri politicians find themselves in today. Disliked & mistrusted by people in J&K for their faith in Indian constitution on one hand & punished by GOI for not toeing their line on the other,” Ms Mehbooba wrote on micro-blogging site twitter.

She said Para, who arrested immediately after filing his DDC nomination, hails from a family where his grandfather would unfurl the Indian flag when not many Kashmiris would do so. “Waheed’s interest in politics started at a young age,” Ms Mehbooba said.

“His last hope now rests on the justice system & I hope that truth & justice prevail,” she added.

Para was arrested by National Investigation Agency (NIA) about five days after he filed his nomination paper for District Development Council (DDC) DDC seat from Pulwama. However, he won after his family members and other PDP leader campaigned in his favour.

Nearly one-and-a-half month after his arrest by the NIA on charges of alleged terror links, Para was on January 10 granted bail by Special Judge Sunit Gupta, holding that “offences, particularly falling under Unlawful Activities Act (UAPA), are not prima facie made out against the applicant/accused”.

But, hours after his release, the Counter Intelligence Kashmir (CIK), a wing of J&K police, re-arrested the PDP leader.

Para, who was instrumental in the revival of the PDP in south Kashmir, especially in militancy-hit Pulwama, allegedly surfaced during the probe into the suspended Deputy Superintendent of Police Davinder Singh case.

Singh was arrested while ferrying two HM militants out of the valley in a vehicle on the Srinagar-Jammu Highway earlier this year.

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