Kashmiri human rights activist Khurram Parvez has been detained a second time, after a court ordered his release from administrative detention on Tuesday, Amnesty International said today.
“Detaining a person right after he is released, without any intention to charge him or bring him to trial, amounts to using a revolving door of persecution,” said Aakar Patel, Executive Director, Amnesty International India.
“This kind of arbitrary use of the law suggests that the Jammu and Kashmir police are determined to lock up Khurram Parvez at any cost.”
The activist was first arrested on 16 September and placed in administrative detention in a jail in Kupwara, over 100 kilometres from his home in Srinagar, for allegedly posing an imminent threat of ‘breach of peace’.
The detention order was based on a police report which claimed that policemen had seen Khurram Parvez on 15 September standing outside a mosque inciting people to shout slogans and march towards a government building.
His wife has denied the claim, saying that they were at her parents’ house in another part of the city at the time.
On Tuesday, a court in Srinagar ordered Khurram Parvez to be released after ruling that the executive official who ordered the detention had not followed necessary procedures, including by failing to adequately explain the grounds for his detention.
"As soon as Khurram Parvez was released, however, he was again detained and later transferred to a police station in Srinagar. According to media reports, the police are holding him in administrative detention under the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act, and are likely to move him to the Kot Balwal jail in Jammu, about 300 kilometres from Srinagar. Senior state police officials have not responded to queries about the case."
Administrative detention laws such as the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act allow for people to be detained without charge or trial.
These laws have often been used to hold individuals in arbitrary detention on vague grounds for long periods of time, ignoring regular criminal justice safeguards.
Amnesty International India calls on authorities in Jammu and Kashmir to immediately release Khurram Parvez, or charge him with a recognizable criminal offence and prosecute him in a fair trial.
"Pending his release, he must be protected from torture or other ill-treatment, given access to his family and lawyers, and provided adequate medical care," Amnesty said, in a statement.