National Conference leader and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah was detained under Public Safety Act (PSA) on Sunday night. The act allows detention for up to two years without a trial. The order came just before the Supreme Court was to hear MDMK chief Vaiko’s habeas corpus petition on Abdullah’s detention. The place where Abdullah senior will be housed has been declared a temporary jail, through an order.
Farooq Abdullah has been under house arrest at his Srinagar residence since the abrogation of Article 370 on August 5.
Public Safety Act was first brought into force when Farooq Abdullah’s father Sheikh Abdullah.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court on Monday directed the Centre to present Farooq Abdullah on September 30. The plea was heard by a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and justices S A Bobde and SA Nazeer. Vaiko is said to be a close friend of Abdullah for the past four decades. He has said that constitutional rights conferred on the National Conference leader had been deprived of on account of "illegal detention without any authority of law".
Tensions are high in Kashmir after New Delhi abrogated provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution to withdraw Jammu and Kashmir’s special status and bifurcated it into two Union Territories on August 5.
On the day Parliament was debating the abrogation in New Delhi, Abdullah appeared before media in Srinagar. That was the only time he was seen in public. While Union Home Minister Amit Shah had said that the government had not detained Farooq Abdullah, the National Conference leader said that that the leaders, including him, have been placed in the House Arrest. " I have a problem of blood pressure & I am arrested in the House. Whatever Home Minister has said is baseless. No one is allowed to enter my house," Abdullah was quoted as saying.