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Coronavirus outbreak: Altaf Wani urges world to help release Kashmiri prisoners from Indian jails

ISLAMABAD: Reiterating his demand for urgent release of all illegally detained Hurriyat leaders and activist lodged in different prisons of India, senior vice chairman Jammu and Kashmir National Front (JKNF) Altaf Hussain Wani has urged the world human rights bodies to mount pressure on Indian government to help release Kashmir prisoners languishing in different jails. “The Indian government’s deliberate act to keep Kashmiri prisoners in highly congested prisons is not only immoral and illegal but a serious violation of the basic human rights”, the JKNF leader said in a statement issued here on Sunday. “At a time when prison decongestion measures are adopted and appreciated worldwide to prevent outbreak of corona pandemic the Indian government has brazenly refused to heed the world human rights organisations’ calls for the release of Kashmiri prisoners”, Wani said. The illegally detained Hurriyat leaders and activists, he said, have been lodged in far-flung and highly congested prisons in India. “Even the family members of the detainees are not in a position to visit them in jails because of the persisting lockdown”, Wani said, adding that at this very crucial time Indian government should learn a lesson from other world countries who have released prisoners in view of the pandemic on humanitarian grounds. “Killing and maiming of Kashmiri youth has become no norm in Kashmir”, he said, adding that situation in the region has worsened so much and so that Kashmiris cannot even mourn the death of their beloved ones. “The right to mourn too has been snatched away from Kashmiris”, Wani said. “What is even more barbarous is that Indian occupation forces have been denying families the right to participate the last rites of their kin killed during encounters.” On the other hand, Wani expressed serious concern over the lack of Corona-virus safety kits in the valley. “The shortage of essential supplies and especially the non-availability of

Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), have made it extremely difficult for doctors, paramedics and healthcare providers to combat corona in the valley”, Wani said. Meanwhile, JKNF spokesman in a separate statement paid eulogising tributes to veteran Kashmiri liberation leader and Chairman of Jammu Kashmir Peoples League (JKPL) S Hameed who was gunned down by Indian forces in mid 90s and his martyrdom anniversary is being observed.