Incarcerated leaders call off hunger strike in Srinagar

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The incarcerated leaders of regional political parties at Centaur subsidiary jail in Srinagar, who had gone on a hunger strike against the government’s order to allegedly restrict their meetings with their families, have called off the strike after assurances from the top officials.

Sources told Deccan Herald that the incarcerated leaders of National Conference (NC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Peoples Conference (PC) went on a hunger strike recently after they were told that they won’t be able to meet their families for a couple of days.

A local newspaper reported that earlier, these leaders had staged protest and even raised slogans when they were informed that only blood relations will be allowed to meet them. 

Son of a one of the incarcerated leader’s told DH that recently when he along with other family members went to meet his father, the jail authorities told them to come on another day as meetings had been restricted. 

“There were relatives of other prisoned leaders also waiting for the meeting. As we were denied meetings, the prisoned leaders protested against the order after which we were given permission to meet them,” he said.

Sources said some top officials visited the subsidiary jail to pacify the agitated leaders, who called off the hunger strike only after they were assured that their relatives will be allowed to meet them on all days.

Over 40 political leaders, including former ministers and legislators, who were detained on August 5 after the Center abrogated J&K’s special status under Article 370, have been lodged at Centuar hotel-turned-jail on the banks of Dal lake in Srinagar.

Two former J&K chief ministers – Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti – have also been jailed, while another former chief minister and present MP from Srinagar, Farooq Abdullah, has been detained under the controversial Public Safety Act – a law that allows detention without trial for a period of three months to two years.

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