Jailed separatist leader Yasin Malik ends hunger strike

by IANS |

New Delhi, Aug 2 (IANS) Convicted Kashmiri Separatist leader Yasin Malik, who is lodged at Tihar Jail in the national capital, has ended his hunger strike, officials said Tuesday.

"He (Yasin Malik) ended his hunger strike yesterday," Director General (Prisons), Sandeep Goyal, told IANS.

The jailed separatist leader, who is currently lodged at Jail No. 7 of the Tihar Prison, went on hunger strike on July 22. When asked the reason behind his hunger strike, the official refrained from divulging any details further, however, prison sources said that Malik was protesting against the agencies that are investigating his cases.

"Malik alleged that his case was not being investigated properly, hence went on an indefinite hunger strike but after assurance that his request has been forwarded to the senior officials, he has ended it," sources said.

On July 26, Malik was hospitalised by the prison authorities after his health deteriorated due to hunger strike. He was discharged on July 29, four days after remaining admitted at the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital in Delhi.

Notably, Malik was arrested immediately after the February 2019 terror strike by Jaish-e-Mohammad and has been in Delhi's Tihar Jail for over two years.

The killing of the 40 CRPF personnel in a bomb blast on February 14, 2019, ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, came as a turning point. Within days, Malik was lifted from his Srinagar residence. His JKLF, along with Jamaat-e-Islami, was banned.

The country's premier probe agencies got two high profile cases -- Rubaiya Sayeed's kidnapping on December 8, 1989 and the four Indian Air Force (IAF) personnel's assassination on January 25, 1990 -- revived against Malik after a freeze of 10 long years.

Malik was convicted in connection with a 2017 terror funding case and sentenced to life imprisonment on May 25 by the National Investigation Agency special court in Delhi in which he pleaded guilty to all charges.

Recently, on July 15, former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti's sister Rubaiya Sayeed identified Yasin Malik as her abductor three decades back.

Rubaiya Sayeed was abducted in 1989 and her release was managed by swapping four jailed militant commanders when her father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed was the then Home Minister in the V.P. Singh government.

Rubaiya Sayeed, listed as the witness for the prosecution, appeared before the CBI court in Jammu and identified Malik and three other accused as her abductors.

Malik is currently lodged at Jail No. 7 of the Tihar Prison.The NIA Court in its order had awarded two life sentences and five punishments of 10 years of 'Rigorous Imprisonment' each to the convict. Rigorous imprisonment means confinement of the offender in a manner that increases the hardship of the jail term based upon the nature of the offence by subjecting the offender to special arrangements in the jail. However, despite Court orders, Malik has not been given any work inside the prison due to security reasons.

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