J&K moves SC to transfer LeT militant from Jammu

NEW DELHI: A day after the Pulwama ‘terror’ attack in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed, the Jammu and Kashmir government Friday moved the Supreme Court seeking that Pakistani Lashkar-e-Taiba militant Zahid Farooq be shifted from Jammu jail to Tihar in the national capital, saying he is “indoctrinating” Indian inmates. A bench of Justices L Nageswara Rao and M R Shah, agreed to examine the plea and issued notice to GoI and sought its response in four weeks. Farooq was arrested while trying to cross border security fence on May 19, 2016. The state government said that intelligence inputs received indicate that militants belonging to outfits like Jaish-e-Muhammad and LeT are indoctrinating the minds of other inmates lodged in the prison. It further said that it has been reliably learnt that the prisoner and other similarly situated individuals have considerable local support and it cannot be ruled out that they may be receiving information, resources as well as other help to carry out militant activities. The state also sought shifting of the trial to Delhi saying it apprehends that transporting the militant to court and back to prison poses a threat to escorting policemen and common public. State’s standing counsel Shoeb Alam cited an example of an attack on a police party last year when policemen were killed and a Pakistani militant was freed from custody while on a hospital visit. “The petitioner State has received confidential intelligence inputs which show that he poses a threat to national security in as much as his involvement in planning and designing terror attacks against the citizens/ residents in India cannot be ruled out. “To execute such nefarious schemes, it is understood that the prisoner and other similarly situated individuals have been mobilising support within the jail premises by influencing the minds and psyche of other inmates,” the state government said. Transfer of Farooq from his current prison in Jammu & Kashmir to a high security prison outside the state is in the interest of national security, it said. “Foreign prisoners like the private respondent are radicalising and brainwashing local Kashmiri youth in prison. There is a concentration of prisoners with similar backgrounds and linkages to terrorist organizations in local prisons in the State of J&K,” it said. The effect of such radicalisation is that the brainwashed local youth who are inmates with these prisoners, are spreading the menace of terrorism and creating sympathisers by influencing, mobilizing against the state, it said.

“The petitioner state has received intelligence inputs that some similarly situated prisoners have affiliations with terror outfits like Jaishe- Muhammad and Lashkare- Taiba, who have received specialized training in indoctrinating the minds of the other inmates lodged in the prison to turn against the State and its citizens. “Such indoctrination is now, unfortunately, being put to perilous use by spreading anti-national sentiments within and outside the prisons and planning attacks sovereignty and integrity of the nation,” the plea said.

—PTI

-Press Trust of India

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