The number of instances where the ‘draconian’ Jammu & Kashmir Public Safety Act (PSA) had to be implemented has come down drastically since abrogation of Article 370. As reported by Times of India, the number of people detained under the PSA has come down to 211 in the past six weeks. The figure was a staggering 921 in the similar timeframe following Hizbul terrorist Burhan Wani’s killing in 2016.
Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist Burhan Wani was eliminated by Indian Armed Forces on 8th July 2016 in the Kokernag area of the Anantnag district. Wani’s death had triggered a Kashmir-wide unrest that continued for four months. Uncontrollable mobs indulged in arson, stone pelting, and vandalism. There were clashes between the security personnel and mobs, resulting in the death of 98 protesters while around 4000 protestors were maimed by pellet guns.
While 921 people were detained under the PSA in six weeks following Wani’s killing in 2016, the number is now 211 in the six weeks since abrogation of Article 370. The drastic reduction can be seen in Jammu region as well. While 102 were detained under PSA in 2016, the figure has been only 19 in last 6 weeks.
In an unprecedented move, on September 16, National Conference leader and former Union Minister Farooq Abdullah was also detained under the PSA. His house has been turned into a subsidiary jail and he will continue to stay there. The Public Safety Act allows the government to detain a person who is perceived to be a threat for law and order for up to 2 years without a trial.
Meanwhile, 3,100 of the 4,000 people detained since the abrogation of Article 370, have been released. The 3100 releases have been made either in hours or days of their original detention. The Police has said that most people were detained under Section 107 of CrPc which became applicable there following the abrogation of Article 370. The police have been working tirelessly to counter terror in forms of threats issued orally, by posters or even physical violence stopping people from resuming their normal lives.