Opposition welcomes Omar Abdullah’s release

Free Mehbooba Mufti and others, says Tharoor; Yechury calls for full access to Internet in J&K

March 24, 2020 09:47 pm | Updated 11:05 pm IST - New Delhi

Back together: Omar Abdullah with his father Farooq Abdullah and mother in Srinagar on Tuesday.

Back together: Omar Abdullah with his father Farooq Abdullah and mother in Srinagar on Tuesday.

The Opposition parties have welcomed the release of National Conference leader Omar Abdullah from eight months of detention. They have also called for the release of other political leaders, including Mehbooba Mufti of the Peoples Democratic Party.

Though the Congress has not issued any official statement, many of its leaders have welcomed Mr. Abdullah’s release.

Party MP Shashi Tharoor wrote on Twitter, “Welcome the release of @OmarAbdullah, which we have been calling for ever since his unjustified arrest. Maybe the #COVID19 lockdown makes all detentions unnecessary now? Please release @MehboobaMufti & all other political detainees without delay!”

Manish Tewari, another Congress MP, called for the release of the other leaders, including former Union Minister Saifuddin Soz.

“Glad @OmarAbdullah is being released after his illegal & unjust detention. All others should be released too. Not that they can go anywhere. #COVID19,” Salman, son of Mr. Soz, wrote on Twitter.

Congress leader and former Home Minister P. Chidambaram said Mr. Abdullah’s case would remain a shocking example of the failure of the justice delivery system. “The Supreme Court should restate the cardinal of a Writ of Habeas Corpus so that citizens and judges will have no misunderstanding of the law,” he wrote on Twitter.

Ghulam Nabi Azad, a former Congress Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, said Mr. Abdullah’s detention was “undemocratic and uncalled for”.

CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said political detainees outside Jammu and Kashmir should also be released. He also called for an unfettered access to the Internet in Jammu and Kashmir at a time of panic over COVID-19.

CPI general secretary D. Raja said the government should stop releasing the leaders piecemeal.

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