Still a Democracy?: Priyanka Gandhi Hits Out at Govt Over 'Arrest' of Congress Leaders in J&K

Still a Democracy?: Priyanka Gandhi Hits Out at Govt Over 'Arrest' of Congress Leaders in J&K

New Delhi: Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has hit out at the government, asking on what grounds her party's leaders were taken into custody in Jammu and Kashmir.

She asked whether it was a crime to speak to the media after the state unit of the Congress was prevented from addressing a press conference on Friday as police detained its chief spokesperson Ravinder Sharma and placed its Jammu and Kashmir president Ghulam Ahmed Mir under house arrest.

"On what grounds have Congress leaders in J&K been arrested? Is it a crime to speak to the media? It's now 15 days since ex CM's who respected and abided by the Constitution of India just like our leaders, have been under arrest (sic)," she said on Twitter.

"Even their families have not been allowed to communicate with them. Does the Modi-Shah Government believe India is still a democracy? (sic)," she said in the tweet with hashtag "StopIllegalArrestsInKashmir".

Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram dubbed the detention of Mir as "outrageously illegal" and hoped that courts will take cognizance of the matter. In a series of tweets, the former finance minister said Mir is under house arrest in Jammu since Friday.

"There was no written order of detention. Outrageously illegal ... I hope the courts will act and secure the liberty of citizens," he tweeted.

On Friday, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad had condemned the arrest of Mir and senior leader Ravinder Sharma in Jammu.

"I strongly condemn the arrest of our J&K PCC Chief, Shri Ghulam Ahmed Mir & spokesperson, Shri Ravinder Sharma in Jammu today. With this unprovoked action against a national political party, the Govt has delivered democracy another body blow. When will this madness end?" Gandhi wrote on Twitter.

Azad said while the state and the central government were asserting that the situation was normal in Jammu and people were celebrating the Centre's decision to abrogate the constitutional provisions that gave a special status to Jammu and Kashmir, opposition leaders were not even allowed to address press conferences.

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