Nayeem Khan Arrested, Sent To Central Jail


Charges Include Provocative Speeches In 2008 Unrest

SRINAGAR: Hurriyat (M) leader and chief of the National Front, Nayeem Ahmad Khan, was arrested by the police on Friday on charges of unlawful activities, even as 9 other separatist leaders have been told to appear in courts or precincts in connection with old cases.

Khan was picked up from his Rawalpora residence this morning, and sent to the Central Jail till February 11 after being produced in a court in the North Kashmir town of Pattan.

According to sources, the separatist leader has a case filed against him in the Pattan police station under section 13 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for inciting crowds in the Palhalan area to hold protest demonstrations during the Shrine Board land transfer row in 2008.

He has also been charged with making anti-national and anti-peace speeches.

The Jammu and Kashmir government had recently accorded sanction to prosecute Khan under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, in a two-year old case. The case pertains to raising ‘provocative’ slogans by Khan and his associate.


The National Front and the High Court Bar Association have termed Khan’s arrest as unwarranted.

“The arrest clearly shows the frustration of the so-called state government and its institutions.” The National Front said in a statement.

“The unjustified and undemocratic act of arresting Nayeem Khan is a clear message that the claims of New Delhi and the so called state government about democracy and tolerance are a hoax and the regime is on the path to curb its political opponents by force. It has given a free hand to the men in uniform to suppress the just, democratic and political resistance movement,” it said.”

Hurriyat (M) has termed Khan’s arrest as “dictatorial and an act of political retribution.” A spokesman said the government was scared of the popular appeal of separatist leaders, and was using every repressive measure to prevent them from performing their activities.

House arrests, preventing leaders from performing religious duties and arbitrary detentions were some of the undemocratic measures taken by the government against the separatist leaders,” the Hurriyat (M) spokesman said.

Democratic Freedom Party (DFP) Chairman Shabir Ahmad Shah termed the arrest as a tactic to psychologically pressurize the separatist leadership in Jammu and Kashmir.

“The freedom struggle of Kashmiris will never be suppressed by these measures. The arrests, draconian laws and jails will have no effect on the freedom struggle,” Shah said adding that people of Jammu and Kashmir had offered ‘five lakh sacrifices” for the freedom movement and the nation was dedicated and committed in the path towards freedom.

In a statement, Peoples Conference general secretary said that intimidating separatist leaders by opening cases against them and arresting them would harm the improving relationship between India and Pakistan.

“At a time when the relations between India and Pakistan seem to be getting better, the NC Government has started causing damage to this improvement by threatening Kashmiri separatist leaders,” he said.

He said that booking separatist leaders in old cases would badly affect the peaceful situation in the state.

The High Court Bar Association (HCBA) has strongly condemned the government move to arrest Nayeem Khan.

“Till date no person has been prosecuted for his political beliefs nor can anyone be prosecuted for his political ideology, because it is a fundamental right of every person to have a political ideology. This action has exposed the Government of India and the state government and it will not prove good,” it said.

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