India’s notorious Tihar Jail represents Kashmiris’ determination for freedom
The idea of freedom gets fomented in the held valley and gets plummeted in Tihar and other Indian jails where the Kashmiri political detainees are suffering from increased human rights abuses.
MIRPUR (AJK): India’s notorious Tihar Jail of New Delhi is for the freedom loving Kashmiris as the maximum-security prison of Robben Island was for the South Africans, where their political leadership, mostly black, remained incarcerated from the mid-1960s to 1991.
It represents the aspiration and determination of 13.5 million people of Jammu and Kashmir state across both sides of the Line of Control, which is personified by their leadership jailed in Tihar Jail.
Tihar has rather become a revolutionary idea, while the bleeding Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IIOJK) represents the revolutionary action. The idea of freedom gets fomented in the held valley and gets plummeted in Tihar and other Indian jails where the Kashmiri political detainees are suffering from increased human rights abuses.
The Government of India can incarcerate the champions of freedom, but it cannot incarcerate their idea of freedom. Every household in the IIOJK has a perpetual desire for freedom from the Indian yoke for the last 75 years, which has intensified after the revocation of special status of Kashmir on August 05, 2019.
Among the Kashmiri freedom fighters is Mussarat Alam Butt, Chairman of All Parties Hurriyat Conference in the IIOJK who is behind bars in Tihar Jail. Hailing from the thickly populated Tankipura locality of Habaqadal area of occupied Srinagar, he got orphaned in childhood and was raised by his uncles.
Since his childhood, Mussarat grew with the desire of freedom. He emerged as one of the most prominent liberation leaders in the Amarnath land row of 2008. Fearing his popularity among the youth, the Indian government put him in Tihar Jail, where he has been languishing till date. Off and on he had been put in isolation in the Hindoli jail.
His wife and only son have no source of income to feed themselves. They have not met him since 2008 as they could not bear the travelling expenses for New Delhi.
Muhammad Farooq Dar, another Kashmiri inmate of New Delhi’s notorious prison, also hails from the Habaqadal area of Srinagar. He has championed the cause of freedom since 1989.
Dar is a commander of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF), who led an army of 40,000 young Kashmiris in 1989. He was imprisoned in June 1990 by the Indian government, which pressurized him to ask his young followers to surrender their guns and also lured him with an offer of Rs 50 million for the purpose. He, however, did not yield to both the pressure and temptation.
Humiliated by his outright refusal, the Indian authorities made Farooq Ahmed Dar under duress to confess the killing of 24 Kashmiri pundits. His elder brother Perveiz Ahmed Dar was brutally murdered by the occupation forces while he was on way to his office at Sheir-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) at Khanka-e- Mualla in Srinagar, and due to which his father had an analytical stroke.
Late Prof Dr Bheam Singh Advocate, once chairman of the Kashmiri lawyers group in the Indian Supreme Court, fought Dar’s cases, and got proved all the 24 murder charges leveled against him as fabricated in the highest court. It took him 16 years (from 1990 to 2006), which he spent in prison.
Farooq Dar was again incarcerated in 2017 along with other Kashmiri leadership in a fake money laundering case. Currently housed in Tihar Jail’s Block No 2 Khare, he is on hunger strike to death in protest against the brutal jail superintendent and is reportedly being forced fed.
Ever since his solitary confinement in the Tihar prison, Dar has not been allowed to see his family, including an eight year old innocent daughter and the wife.
According to a report, the money sent by the families of jailed Kashmiri leaders is sent back deliberately by the Tihar jail authorities on the pretext of wrong address. In the holy month of Ramazan, the tap water was deliberately disconnected in the jail washrooms so that they were not able to perform ablutions for offering prayers.
The families blame that the Tihar jail authorities are carrying out the Hindutava agenda of the extremist Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party government of India.
They allege that the lawyers in Delhi courts ask for whooping fees of Rs 5 million per hearing, which is not affordable for the already suppressed families of jailed Kashmiri leaders.
It had also jeopardized the safety and security of women and children back home in held Kashmir where the Indian occupation troops can be seen at every nook and cranny.