Masrat Alam will go to jail again: Rajnath Singh

New Delhi/Kanpur, April 17:

Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday said that Kashmiri separatist leader Masrat Alam will be sent to jail again and those charged with sedition will not be forgiven.

Pic Courtesy:
Pic Courtesy:

Asked by reporters in Kanpur if Alam will be sent to jail again, Singh said: “Yes he will go to jail… Wait and watch what happens.”

“I want to assure the country that the government will not compromise on the unity and integrity of the country. Sedition will not be forgiven,” said the home minister.

Alam had led a reception rally on April 15 for senior separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani who returned to the valley after spending more than three months in New Delhi because of health reasons.

Youths surrounding Alam displayed Pakistani flags at the rally, shouted Pro-Pakistan slogans and even climbed the outer wall of the police headquarters in the area to display Pakistani flags for the media cameras.

Alam, who was placed under house arrest on Thursday night, is in police detention in Badgam district of the state where a police complaint was lodged against him for raising pro-Pakistan slogans and waving its flag during the rally.

Geelani is also under house arrest.

Asked why permission was given for the rally, Singh said: “Probably, the state government did not have an idea it will lead to such a situation.”

Reacting to the issue Minister of state in the Prime Minister’s Office Jitendra Singh told reporters that the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government at the Centre follows a “zero tolerance policy against terrorism and separatism”.

He also said that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would not be under any pressure “merely for existence in the governance or a coalition” in Jammu and Kashmir.

“Nobody can go away with this impression that merely for existence in the governance or in a coalition, the BJP would be ready to compromise on any of these principles,” he said.

Ram Madhav, national general secretary of the BJP, said anybody involved in anti-country activities should be punished.

Meanwhile, the Congress said that the Jammu and Kashmir government should have “watched” Alam.

Congress general secretary Shakeel Ahmad in New Delhi criticised the state government for delayed action on the issue.

“The BJP-PDP coalition government took action against Masrat Alam, who participated in an anti-India rally in the state, only after media made a hue and cry about it,” Ahmad told IANS.

“The act of separatists is totally unacceptable and the state government should have taken care in a matter like this,” he said, asking why they were given permission to hold the rally.

Police lodged a first information report (FIR) against Alam on April 15 when he led a separatist rally for Geelani.

The Jammu and Kashmir government had released Alam from preventive detention on March 7 after more than four years. He was arrested during the 2010 unrest in the Kashmir Valley and accused of inciting youth during the unrest, leading to clashes between mobs and security forces in which at least 112 people were killed. (IANS)

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