SRINAGAR: Sporting grey beard and trimmed hairdo, incarcerated former chief minister betrayed no sense of fear of fatigue in the picture. This is the first picture of jailed Omar Abdullah after he was taken into preventive detention. However, there is no official word about the authenticity and veracity of the picture that was leaked online.
Interestingly the picture was leaked a day after government restored the postpaid mobile services in Kashmir.The picture has been shared by various people on different social media platforms including Twitter and WhatsApp.
Omar, a former chief minister and National Conference vice president has been detained since August 5, when Centre abrogated Article 370 and divided Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories. Omar is lodged in Hari Niwas Palace which has been designated as sub jail by the state government.
Sources said the picture was reportedly clicked when the 15 member National Conference (NC) delegation from Jammu met him at Hari Niwas Palace on October 6. On the same day Omar made a cameo when he clicked selfies with his two visiting Members of Parliament –Justice (retd) Hasnain Masoodi and Akbar Lone. A short video taken from a distance showing Omar seeing off his two MPs, was telecast by a television news channel on that day.
The picture surfaced on the day when a group of women civil society members Omar Abdullah’s sister Safia Khan tried to stage a silent sit-in against the abrogation of Article 370 and “downgrading” of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories.
Wearing black arm bands and carrying banners, a group of women assembled in Partap Park and tried to stage a peaceful sit in. However a large posse of women police and paramilitary forces immediately swooped on the group and snatched the banners and bundled the protestors in their vehicles before driving them to the police station. They were later shifted to Central Jail.
Omar sister Safia was carrying a banner reading “Kashmiri brides not for sale”, referring to the statement made by some BJP leaders of Haryana and UP after the abrogation of Article 370. Women protestors were also demanding the release of detainees and restoration of civil liberties.
“We the women of Kashmir disapprove the unilateral decision taken by the government of India to revoke Article 370, 35 A and downgrade and split the state of Jammu and Kashmir. We feel betrayed, humiliated and violated as people”, read the joint statement.