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J&K Cong. prevented from addressing presser in Jammu; senior leader detained

By PTI Updated: Aug 16, 2019 9:26 pm

Jammu, Aug. 16 (PTI): The Jammu and Kashmir unit of the Congress was on Friday prevented from addressing a press conference as police detained its chief spokesperson MLC Ravinder Sharama at the party headquarters here.

Sharma was about to address a press conference at the Shaheedi Chowk party headquarters when a police party appeared on the scene and asked him to accompany him as a senior officer wanted to talk to him.

Sharma resisted and asked them that he is going to address the waiting media, but he was forcibly taken into the preventive custody and whisked away to a police station in a police vehicle waiting outside the party headquarters.

“The action of the administration is undemocratic and unconstitutional. We were holding a presser to highlight the snatched rights of the people and arrest and house arrest of party leaders (since the abrogation of the provisions of Article 370 on August 5),” Chairman Other Backward Classes (OBC) unit of the party Suresh Kumar Dogra later told reporters.

He termed the detention of Sharma as the violation of the right to freedom of speech and expression guaranteed by the Constitution.

“This is total dictatorship and encroachment on our right to put forth our point of view in a democratic manner…We are not going to launch a rebellion against the government’s move on Article 370,” Dogra said.

A police officer said Sharma was taken into preventive custody to maintain law and order.

“There was an apprehension that his speech might instigate people and result in law and order situation,” he said, asking not to be named.

By PTI Updated: Aug 16, 2019 9:26:50 pm