Kashmir Indepth

Central jail Srinagar inmates hold day-long hunger strike to press for their demands


Srinagar, April 25 : The inmates of central jail here on Thursday ended their day-long hunger strike after intervention by Deputy Commissioner Srinagar Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary.

Official sources told  that inmates started the hunger strike early in the morning and their demands include the transfer of jail Superintendent and withdrawal of FIR registered against them in connection with the recent incident during the intervening night of April 5 and 6. The deputy commissioner Srinagar visited the central jail around 6:00 pm and persuaded the inmates to call off their strike.

Recently a five-member team of lawyers from the Bar Association visited the centre jail and submitted a report before the Chief Judicial Magistrate Srinagar. The report quoting inmates said that the fire earlier attributed to the inmates actually happened due to firing of teargas shells by police and paramilitary CRPF called to quell the protests inside the jail, after inmates protested against the alleged desecration of Holy Quran.

The inmates, as per Bar report said, are not allowed to meet any of the visitors or relatives and have also not being provided any newspaper or access to any media like TV or Radio.

“The Bar members found that after the incident, there has been a communication breakdown between the inmates and the jail administration.”

The Bar team found that the inmates feel that a conspiracy has been hatched against them and the State has adopted a hostile attitude towards them for their “political ideology and thought.”

“They feel that they will not be allowed any opportunity of proving their innocence before any enquiry officer which may be ordered in the matter or in the court of law. They feel that they may be shifted to some jail outside the State so as to prolong their trial and detention in jail. They have demanded that the whole incident should be got enquired into by the High Court and the enquiry should be supervised by a sitting judge of the court.”

The Bar team had said that inmates also demanded that the FIR registered against them by the jail authorities “being an attempt to victimize them” should not be allowed to be investigated until the enquiry is gets completed by the High Court.” (GNS)

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