Mobiles seized from Kashmir's VIP prisoners' rooms

Iltija Mufti, daughter of PDP president and former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, in a tweet said, “Manhandling started when Sajjad Lone was repeatedly frisked and asked to undress. New jail windows are blocked with woods, lack heaters and have surveillance jammers."  Photo/PTI

Jammu and Kashmir police seized at least a dozen phones during a search operation of rooms of political detainees at MLA Hostel, here, on Saturday.

Sources told Deccan Herald that security personnel searched the rooms of nearly three dozen VIP politicians, who are undergoing detention since August 5 after the Center abrogated Jammu and Kashmir's special status under Article 370 and bifurcated the erstwhile state into two union territories.

"The searches were carried after it came to the notice of the security wing of the J&K police that the VIP prisoners were using mobile phones from the MLA Hostel, which had been converted into a sub-jail last week," they said and added during the searches a dozen mobile phones were seized.

Most of these 33 detainees are former legislators and ministers and belong to regional National Conference, PDP and Peoples Conference. A senior official told DH that these leaders were in contact with their workers and were giving instructions to them from the jail itself.

"We got the input and promptly took the action. Investigations are on as how mobile phones reached inside the sub-jail," he added.

On Sunday when these politicians were shifted to the MLA Hostel from the Centaur Hotel, which had been converted into a sub jail since August 5, fractious scenes were witnessed as a couple of politicians engaged in a verbal spat with security personnel.

Reports had emerged that commotion broke when an on-duty police official conducted a body search on the People’s Conference chief Sajad Lone, a former BJP ally, who objected to the policeman’s “behavior”. There were also unconfirmed reports of Lone and three other politicians being hackled by the security personnel.

Iltija Mufti, daughter of PDP president and former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, in a tweet said, “Manhandling started when Sajjad Lone was repeatedly frisked and asked to undress. New jail windows are blocked with woods, lack heaters and have surveillance jammers." 

However, J&K Director General Police (DGP) Dilbagh Singh had refuted the allegations of manhandling of these leaders. "It is absolutely incorrect as no such incident happened," he had said.

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