Almost a week after 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel were killed in a deadly suicide bomb attack in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama, the Centre has sent 100 additional companies of paramilitary forces to the state on an 'urgent' basis.
The order was given amid a major crackdown on separatist leader Yasin Malik and dozens of Jamaat-e-Islami (JeI) cadres by the Jammu and Kashmir Police. The detentions in the Valley come ahead of the Supreme Court hearing on Article 35A, which gives special powers to the state of Jammu and Kashmir, expected to be taken up on Monday.
A notice from the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) late on Friday evening has led to the additional deployment of paramilitary forces being airlifted to Srinagar, which comprise 45 firms of CRPF, 35 from BSF and 10 each from SSB and ITBP.
The JeI has condemned the action of Jammu and Kashmir Police against its cadre. "The way forces personnel unleashed the spree of mass arrest and detained dozens of Jamaat members prior to the hearing seems something is hatching behind the curtains. Any attempt of eroding or tampering Article 35A is unacceptable for people of Jammu and Kashmir," said Jamaat-e-Islam spokesperson.
Those detained include Ameer Jama'at Dr Abdul Hamid Fayaz, Advocate Zahid Ali (Spokesperson), Ghulam Qadir Lone (Former Secretary General), Abdur Rouf (Ameer Zila Islamabad), Mudasir Ahmad (Ameer Tehsil Pahalgam), Abdul Salam (Dialgam), Bakhtawar Ahmad (Dialgam), Mohammad Amin Wani (Tral), Bilal Ahmad (Chadoora), Ghulam Mohammad Dar (Chak Sangran) and dozens more.
DOZENS DETAINED IN J&K
A spokesman of the Jamaat confirmed that among those detained include the chief, (Ameer-e-Jamaat) Abdul Hamid Fayaz.
The nocturnal raids were conducted in south, central and north Kashmir districts to mop up the senior-most members of the political group.
The Jamaat said that the authorities have given no explanation as to why the raids were necessitated on the oldest religio-political organisation which has over 5,000 cadres.
Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman Yasin Malik was also detained by the police in Srinagar on Friday. He has been lodged in a police station.
In the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack, not just separatists, but mainstream political leaders of the valley including former IAS officer Shah Faesal and PDP leader Waheed Parra have also lost their security cover. The government also withdrew the security cover of several separatists in Kashmir, including Yasin Malik, Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Shabir Shah and Saleem Geelani.