PSA ghost again haunts Valley

There's no threat of 2010-type uprising, we release first timers after counseling: Police

Srinagar: The poll-time crackdown on Kashmir's youth has caused unrest across Kashmir Valley with some youth being booked under the draconian  Public Safety Act, which empowers the state to jail a person for minimum two years without trial. At least two boys in South Kashmir's Pulwama and Shopian districts have been booked under this widely abhorred law. The boys have been shifted to the jails outside Kashmir.

Reports said Zubir Ahmed Turray son Bashir Ahmad, a resident of Bonabazar Shopian, has been arrested and subsequently booked under PSA. District Magistrate Shopian in its order vide number 01/DM/PSA/2014 slapped PSA on Turray and lodged him to district jail Udhampur.

Zubair's family has refuted charges, saying that he was implicated in false charges.

According to the neighbors of Turray family, Zubair sounded political when he would speak. " This made him a soft target," a neighbor said.

Refuting these claims, Superintended of Police Shopian Showkat Ahmed said the Police had conclusive evidence against Zubair.

Showkat siad  Zubair Turray was involved in the attack on one of the Kashmir University's vehicle carrying  staff in the town. He claimed that  19 FIRs had been lodged against Turray in different police stations of the town and all these cases were related with stone pelting, militancy and drug peddling.

"He is not only involved in frequent stone-pelting incidents but he is also a drug peddler and head of a drug mafia gang,” he said adding that the accused was also involved in a grenade throwing case as well.

Meanwhile a  quoted an unnamed police official claiming Zubair was not a first time offender. “We released most of the youth whom we found first time offenders. You can check the record that this fellow had already served a jail term last year when he was booked under PSA. His role in violent activities established role in violence and stone pelting,” he said.

Pertinently, a few days back police slapped PSA on a Pulwama youth Waseem Sofi and lodged him in Khatua Jail.

Pertinently, Wasim Sofi of Pulwama has also been booked under PSA. The town remained tense for several days against Wasim's arrest.

The dossiers being slapped on youth has caused unease among the population and many here believe that the situation may trigger a 2010-type uprising. Groups defending human rights in Kashmir have expressed anguish over the arrest of "2000 young boys" and dubbed the ongoing polling process as a "military operation". Police, however, downplays the threat of an uprising. "The situation is fully under control. We don't detain first timers. Anybody we found first time indulging in stone pelting we organized counseling for him. In fact we released more than a dozen boys after teaching them life skills," said Tenjinder Singh, the Police Chief of Pulwama.

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