Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti, accompanied by her supporters, staged a sit-in protest on the Rajouri-Poonch highway on Saturday.
The move came after Mehbooba was denied permission by the Jammu and Kashmir administration to visit Topa Peer (Bufliaz) in Poonch.
Mehbooba’s intended purpose for the visit was to offer condolences to the families of civilians who died allegedly in Army custody earlier this month. Authorities refused Mufti’s entry, leading to a determined stand on the highway. During her sit-in, Mehbooba asserted that she would not retreat even if it meant spending the entire night on the highway.
She accused the administration of adopting a “discriminatory” stance, highlighting the inconsistency in treatment compared to other party leaders who were allowed similar visits without hindrance.
Addressing the media, Mehbooba questioned the administration’s motives, stating, “I don’t know why the administration is so afraid of me. There are no security issues, yet I’m not allowed. Transport is moving, leaders are meeting relatives, only I am being stopped, probably because their (security agencies’) secrets will be made public.”
This incident follows a previous restriction on Mehbooba’s movement when she was prevented. On December 21, militants ambushed two army vehicles, resulting in the killing of four soldiers. The unidentified militants managed to flee, allegedly snatching weapons from the slain soldiers.
Subsequently, security agencies launched a massive cordon operation to apprehend the militants. However, even after a week, they have yet to achieve success.
Following the attack, the Army allegedly detained more than a dozen locals for questioning, subjecting them to torture, which led to the death of three persons.
A video of the ‘torture’ has gone viral. While the administration has not commented on the video, it has announced compensation and government jobs for the families affected by the violence.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by Azadi Times staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)