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PDP’s Parra gets bail, Jammu and Kashmir parties welcome court order

Waheed-ur-Rehman Parra. Photo: Twitter/@parawahid

Waheed-ur-Rehman Parra. Photo: Twitter/@parawahid

The Jammu and Kashmir High Court on Wednesday granted bail to Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) youth president Waheed-ur-Rehman Parra. Arrested in 2020, he faces charges under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

“Keeping in view the totality of the circumstances and the discussion, we are of the considered view that this (bail) appeal deserves to be allowed. Consequently, the order dated July 20, 2021 passed by the Special Judge, NIA (National Investigation Agency), Srinagar, is set aside. The superintendent, Central Jail, is directed to release the appellant, provided he is not involved in any other case,” a Division Bench, comprising Justices Vinod Chatterji Koul and Sanjeev Kumar, said.

Justices Koul and Kumar directed Parra to make himself available before the Investigating Officer as and when required. “He [Parra] will not leave the Union Territory of J&K without prior permission. He shall surrender his passport before the Investigation Officer,” the Bench observed in the order.

Parra, who is considered close to party president Mehbooba Mufti, was arrested on November 25, 2020 by the National Investigation Agency in a militancy-related case but was granted bail by a special judge on January 9, 2021. However, he was again arrested by the Counter Intelligence Kashmir, a wing of the J&K police, in another case, where he was accused of “having links with militants and separatists”.

However, a rights group of the United Nations, in a statement had said that the allegation was “an act of reprisals against Mr. Parra following his engagement with UN Security Council members and denunciation of human rights violations in the state of J&K.”

Winner in DDC polls

Parra’s arrest came immediately after he contested the DDC (District Development Council) polls and won a seat from Pulwama in 2020.

Ms. Mufti said, “Finally, after almost two years, Parra gets bail and I hope he walks out as a free man soon. Would like to thank his lawyer Shariq for fighting his case with such conviction and determination”.

The National Conference also welcomed Parra’s release. “I welcome the decision of the court to release Parra. He has worked tirelessly to strengthen grassroots democratic institutions and has been on forefront always. Every institution of the nation has a responsibility to respect sentiments of people and to ensure peace prevails,” its leader Salman Sagar said.

Peoples Conference chief Sajad Lone stated, “What good news that Parra has been granted bail. My ex-jail mate and youthful friend. He has been through tough times. I am so happy for him and his family.”

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Printable version | Jun 27, 2022 12:38:24 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/pdps-parra-gets-bail-jk-parties-welcome-court-order/article65460705.ece