Saifuddin Soz to sue J&K administration over 'unlawful house arrest'; Rahul Gandhi seeks his release

Soz has alleged that he has been detained in his house since 5 August, 2019, when the Centre abrogated Article 370. However, the UT administration denied the charge in the SC on Wednesday

FP Staff July 31, 2020 10:20:29 IST
Saifuddin Soz to sue J&K administration over 'unlawful house arrest'; Rahul Gandhi seeks his release

Senior Congress leader and former Union minister Saifuddin Soz on Thursday said he would sue the government for his "unlawful house arrest" since 5 August last year, when the Centre revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, and termed the government's response in the Supreme Court that he was not under detention as "falsehood".

"I take a strong exception to the government stand before the Supreme Court that I had neither been put under house arrest nor had any restrictions been imposed on me since 5 August, 2019," Soz said in a statement in Srinagar.

He said the government has resorted to "falsehood as it had unlawfully incarcerated me since 5 August, 2019".

"All this while, I was not allowed to move out of my premises. I left my premises twice, when I had to visit my ailing sister and I went to Delhi on 17th September, 2019 to 21st September, 2019 and 15th December, 2019 to 21st December, 2019 for seeking medical advice. Whenever I went out of my premises since 5 August, 2019, I had to obtain permission from the government," he said.

The former Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) president added that he has decided to sue the government for his "unlawful" house arrest.

"I have decided to sue the government for my unlawful house arrest since August 5, 2019. I will further sue the government for compensation for the incarceration and illegal suspension of civil liberties to which I am entitled under the Constitution," he said.

In an affidavit before the Supreme Court, the Jammu and Kashmir administration had said Soz was "never detained nor under house arrest" and there are "no restrictions on his movement subject to security clearance".

The government's affidavit came in response to a petition by Soz's wife, seeking her husband's release from "illegal detention" and to be brought before the court.

Soz's son, Salman Anees, addressed the Supreme Court through Twitter and asked if the top court will hold the Jammu and Kashmir administration accountable for 'lying' or will it accept its own 'humiliation'.

Sharing a video clip, which shows police stopping Soz from leaving his home and speaking to the media, Salman tweeted, "Dear Supreme Court of India: The Jammu and Kashmir Government lied to you. This is proof. Now, will you accept your own humiliation or hold the govt accountable? History will judge you."

Meanwhile, Rahul Gandhi demanded Soz's immediate release. "The illegal detention of political leaders with absolutely no basis damages the fabric of our nation. Mr Soz must be released at once," Gandhi tweeted.

With inptus from PTI

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