J&K govt likely to lift curb on separatist leaders

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Srinagar, March 29: With Mirwaiz Umer Farooq set free after 45 days of house detention, the Jammu and Kashmir government is likely to lift curbs on movement of other separatist leaders over the next few days.

The authorities are also sincerely considering releasing most of the leaders who have been detained in various jails across the state, sources said.

It was learnt that restrictions on Syed Ali Gilani and Yasin Malik were being considered to be eased while Shabir Ahmad Shah might soon be shifted to Srinagar and released from there. Shah, who was arrested last month, is currently detained at a jail in Jammu although authorities said that he was not booked under Public Safety Ac. All separatist leaders and activists who have not been booked for any serious crime would be released in the next few weeks, sources added.

Highly-placed sources in the state police said the separatist leaders would be released as soon as the situation in the state improved. They said besides the leaders, some youths who have also been detained on grounds of precaution and do not have major cases labelled against them would also be released soon.

Chairmen of both factions of the Hurriyat Conference, Geelani and Farooq, were put under house detention in the wake of the hanging of Afzal Guru, convicted in the 2001 Parliament attack, on February 9. Later, JKLF chairman Malik was also detained at Srinagar airport after he returned from a private visit to Pakistan and put under house arrest.

Yasin was seen sharing the dais with Hafiz saeed, the Lashkar-e-Taiba man and mastermind behind the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks in Pakistan, something which had created a huge furore in the Indian media and also made the government pose restriction on Malik.

The police had also arrested other separatist leaders on charges that they were issuing protest calendars in the absence of Geelani, who was put under house arrest after Guru's execution.

OneIndia News

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