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Sunday, September 25, 2022

Result of ‘unbridled’ bureaucratic powers: Omar says ‘worse reason to detain a person’

National Conference vice president Omar Abdullah on Tuesday said the arrest of a Kashmiri political activist over his remarks that he has more expectations from local officials rather than those from outside is the result of ‘unbridled’ bureaucratic powers.

It’s unacceptable that a person should be jailed for expressing a ‘totally harmless’ opinion, the former chief minister said.

50-year-old Sajad Rashi Sofi of Safapora in Ganderbal district was arrested after he told LG advisor Baseer Khan at Mansbal at a ‘Janta Darbar’ on June 10 that he can understand the issues of people of the area better as compared to officers from outside because he is a local.

Sofi’s remarks did not go down well with Ganderbal Deputy Commissioner Krittika Jyotsna, who is an IAS officer from Uttar Pradesh.

Sofi was summoned and booked by the police for promoting enmity between different groups on the same night.

In a tweet, Omar said, “I haven’t come across a worse reason to detain a person & I was detained for encouraging people to vote so that’s saying something. It’s unacceptable that a person should be jailed for expressing a totally harmless opinion. This is what happens when bureaucratic power is unbridled.”

Sofi was granted bail by a local court here on Saturday. However, even after this, police did not release Sofi and instead booked him under sections of the law under which a person can be put under ‘preventive custody’ for being a ‘threat to peace’.

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