February 2020 News

Oppn Raises Farooq's Continued Detention In Both Houses Of Parl

5 February 2020

New Delhi: Raising the issue of detention of NC leader Farooq Abdullah in Lok Sabha, leaders from opposition parties today attacked the Government for 'illegally' detaining an old leader and walked out of the House. Abdullah, the National Conference leader and former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, has been under detention from August 5 last year since the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A. 'Three former Chief Ministers including Farooq Abdullah are languishing in jails for the past six months, they have been put behind bars without giving any proper reason,' Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said, while demanding the release of the sitting member. Abdullah has been illegally detained, Chowdhury alleged. Later Congress members along with those of several other opposition parties walked out of the House. TMC leader Sudip Bandyopadhyay also raised the issue of detention of Abdullah and said the issue was also raised during the all-party meeting. 'I would request the Government to intimate this House at least about his health condition,' he said. Earlier Congress MP K Suresh raised the issue of release of Abdullah, but it was cut short by the Speaker. It is the responsibility of the Government and House to ensure his welfare and also that he exercises his right as an elected representative, Suresh said. Thereafter members of Congress, DMK, NCP, NC and Muslim League entered the well of the House raising slogans for release of Abdullah. In Rajya Sabha, members from the NCP, DMK, TDP and the RJD also voiced concern over the detention of NC leader Farooq Abdullah since August 5 last year when Article 370 giving special status to Jammu and Kashmir was scrapped, and questioned the government's intent. Participating in the debate on the Motion of Thanks on the President's address in the Upper House, the ruling BJP defended the government's decisions on Jammu and Kashmir and the Citizenship Amendment Act, saying they have strengthened the nation and democracy, and slammed the opposition for backing protests like in Shaheen Bagh. 'Nehru, Gandhi, Ambedkar, Constitution and we the people of India are under attack. Every day under the present government is January 30 when Mahatma Gandhi was murdered. 'Ecosystem of the nation is being destroyed and days are not far off when the word Taliban will not be alien here,' RJD leader Manoj Kumar Jha said. Majeed Memon (NCP) asked what kind of terror was created by former J-K chief minister Farooq Abdullah that he was detained since August 5 and could not attend Parliament. The National Conference leader is an MP from Srinagar. Memon said the Constitutional validity of abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir is yet to undergo judicial scrutiny. DMK's Vaiko termed August 5, 2019 as the 'blackest day' in the history of India saying three former chief ministers were detained and added that it was a pre-mediated conspiracy of 'Hindutva forces'. Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi Naqvi said the BJP government has strengthened the social fabric of nation and believed in 'Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas'. He took a dig at the Congress, saying this is a strong government unlike in the past when 'there used to be a PM and super PM and super PMO'. Participating in the debate, BJP MP Vijay Goel said he is a 'proud Hindu' and RSS volunteer. Taking on the Congress party for objecting to scrapping of Article 370, Goel challenged the opposition party to announce they will bring back the provision if voted to power. He said as the opposition parties have failed to defeat Narendra Modi, they have taken to protests on streets as seen at Shaheen Bagh. Meanwhile, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra today said it had been six months since former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Ministers had been detained and asked whether India is still a democracy. Priyanka Gandhi pointed out that it has been six months since the former Chief Ministers have been incarcerated without any charges and millions of people locked down in Jammu and Kashmir. 'Six months ago we were asking how long this will carry on? Now we are asking whether we are still a democracy or not,' she tweeted. CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury today wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi calling for release of the people detained in Kashmir, lifting of the clampdown on communications, restoration of the democratic process and honouring the assurances made to people at the time of the State's accession to the Indian Union. It has been six months since restrictions were imposed in Jammu and Kashmir following the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A of the Indian Constitution through a resolution adopted by Parliament. In his letter, Yechury has said thousands have been detained since the intervening night of August 4-5, 2019. They include people like Farooq Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah (all three former Chief Ministers of the erstwhile State), Mohd. Yusuf Tarigami, a four-time elected MLA to the now defunct Assembly, and many others, he said. 'I am writing to you to demand that the detained persons be released and granted their liberty and freedoms as guaranteed by the Indian Constitution. The communications clampdown must be lifted and the democratic processes restored immediately. These have severely impacted the economy of the region imposing unprecedented misery on the people,' he said. 'The assurances made to the people at the time of the accession of the state to the Indian Union must be honoured,' the letter said.