National

House arrests signal that govt will defy all democratic norms in J&K: Chidambaram

Senior Congress leader and former home minister P. Chidambaram on Monday condemned the “house arrest” of leaders in Jammu and Kashmir and claimed it was a signal that the government would defy all democratic norms to achieve its objectives.

Kashmir remained on edge as authorities stepped up security at vital installations and in sensitive areas, suspended mobile internet services and either “arrested” or “detained” several leaders in fast-paced developments on Sunday night.

Reacting to the developments, Mr. Chidambaram said he was keeping his fingers crossed and before the day was over it would be known if there would be a major crisis in the state.

“The house arrest of J&K leaders is a signal that the government will defy all democratic norms and principles to achieve its objects. I condemn the house arrests,” he said in a series of tweets.

“I had warned of a misadventure in J&K. It seems the government is determined to embark upon one,” he said.

"Mass hysteria"

Senior Congress leader and former Union Ministers Shashi Tharoor and Jyotiraditya Scindia also condemned the government over its decision to put the political leaders under house arrest.

Tharoor tweeted: “You are not alone Omar Abdullah. Every Indian democrat will stand with the decent mainstream leaders in Kashmir as you face up to whatever the government has in store for our country. Parliament is still in session and our voices will not be stilled.

“What is going on in J&K? Why would leaders be arrested overnight while having done no wrong? If Kashmiris are our citizens and their leaders our partners, surely the mainstream ones must be kept on board while we act against terrorists and separatists? If we alienate them, who’s left?”

Mr. Scindia also took to Twitter and wrote: “The uncertainty and fear only serves to worsen the situation. Government must be open, transparent, and take people and opposition leaders into confidence.

“Leaders being placed under house arrest overnight while mass hysteria and deployment of troops, both continue to rise. The situation in Kashmir is indeed worrying. The govt must make its intentions clear.”

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Printable version | May 30, 2020 6:12:41 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/house-arrests-signal-that-govt-will-defy-all-democratic-norms-in-jk-chidambaram/article28819241.ece

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