Srinagar, December 25, 2018 (PPI-OT): In occupied Kashmir, the High Court has ordered the authorities to ensure provision of information regarding the shifting of detainees to Indian jails to their family members. The High Court issued the order even as the occupation authorities sought adjournment of two weeks in order to enable it file counter affidavit to a PIL (public interest litigation) in which challenge has been made to an amendment in draconian law, Public Safety Act (PSA) that allows shifting of the Kashmiri detainees to jails outside the occupied territory.
“The respondents shall ensure that they enable interaction of the detainees with their family members. In case physical interaction for any reason is not possible, the respondents shall take steps so that they enable the family members of the detainees to interact with them through video conferencing,” a division bench of the court said in its order. “Telephonic communication as per rules of the jails could also be enabled,” the court said, adding that health and nutritional requirements of the detainees shall also be provided strictly as per the rules.
The petition filed by High Court Bar Association (HCBA) of the occupied territory has said that it is more concerning that the jail authorities are not providing the whereabouts of the detainees to their kith and kin so that they could go and meet them in the jail where they have been lodged.
The HCBA maintained that shifting of the Kashmiri detainees to the jails located outside the territory, by making an amendment in the PSA was an extra-territorial piece of legislation which is legally invalid. It added that the amendment was also contrary to the Constitutional Judgment of five Judge Bench of the Indian Supreme Court as well as Prisons Act, Prisoners Act and Jail Manual. The Bar Association had filed a writ petition before the High Court for quashing the amendment in which court had issued notice and referred the matter to PIL.
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Kashmir Media Service
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