Majid Kapra

Police detains PDP leaders protesting against new land laws

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Will not let anyone loot J&K's land and resources: Mehbooba Mufti

Photo-Javed Khan/Kashmir Images

Srinagar: Several PDP leaders were on Thursday detained by police as they tried to stage a protest against the new land laws notified by the Centre for Jammu and Kashmir.

As soon as the PDP leaders amid anti BJP slogans reached the party’s Srinagar office at Sher-e-Kashmir Municipal Park, a pose of policemen deployed there in advance bundled them into police vehicles and detained them at police station Kothibagh here.

PDP leader Khursheed Alam, party spokesman Suhail Bukhari and youth president Waheed Parra were among those detained by police.

The party leaders wanted to hold a protest rally against the amendments made to the land laws of the Union territory by the Centre on Tuesday which allow people from other parts of the country to buy land in the region.

The mainstream parties of Kashmir have decried the amendments and termed the move akin to “putting Jammu and Kashmir up for sale”.

PDP president Mehbooba Mufti tried to reach the PDP office, but was asked by the police to return to her residence.

Addressing reporters at her Gupkar residence, Mufti said the party leaders were protesting the new land laws, but no one was allowed to speak in Kashmir.

“Our protest was against the laws passed for looting the resources of Jammu and Kashmir… But no one is allowed to speak here,” she said accusing the BJP of pursuing communal agenda.

The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister also said that she will not let anyone “loot” land and resources in J&K.

“We will not stay silent and will make efforts that nobody takes away our land and resources. We will not let it happen,” she said.

Mufti alleged that the Centre has no love for the Kashmiris but only for its resources.

Warning the Centre that they were not only the ”Twitter” politicians, Mufti while referring to curbs on the party protest today, said: “Today you stopped us on the behest of force but next time this will not happen.”

She said that everyday new directions were being passed by the centre to pressurize people of J&K. “If they have that much of force why don’t they throw out the Chinese who have occupied the Indian land in Ladakh. They go helpless in front of them,” she said.

“PDP’s @parawahid, Khurshid Alam, Rouf Bhat, @MohsinQayoom_  & @buttkout were arrested by J&K police for protesting against the settler colonial land laws thrusted upon people of J&K. We will continue to raise our voice collectively & wont tolerate attempts to change demographics,” the PDP leader had tweeted earlier.

Earlier in the morning, police had sealed the PDP office in Srinagar ahead of the party’s scheduled protest.

Mehbooba Mufti slammed the administration for the move. “PDP office in Srinagar sealed by J&K admin & workers arrested for organising a peaceful protest. A similar protest was allowed in Jammu so why was it thwarted here? Is this your definition of ‘normalcy’ that’s being showcased in the world?” she wrote on Twitter.

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