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PSA will be revoked if voted to power: Omar Abdullah

Several separatist leaders and youths accused of involvement in stone-pelting have been detained under the PSA.

January 31, 2019 / 05:49 PM IST

National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah said on January 31 he would ensure revocation of the controversial Public Safety Act (PSA) if his party was voted to power in Jammu and Kashmir.

"If voted to power, PSA revocation will be ensured," the National Conference twitter handle quoted the former chief minister as saying in Pulwama in south Kashmir.

Several separatist leaders and youths accused of involvement in stone-pelting have been detained under the PSA.

The law -- first enacted by the government led by Omar Abdullah's grandfather, Sheikh Abdullah, in the 1970s to tackle timber-smuggling in forests -- has come under criticism from human rights groups like Amnesty International.

Omar Abdullah said his party was committed to bring the state out of misery, despondency and darkness. "The masses reflecting the faith that #OnlyHal (plough -- election symbol of the party) is the answer to their problems."

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The Peoples Democratic Party was quick to dismiss Omar Abdullah's promise.

"A party that convinced the idea and acts like PSA, POTA (Prevention of Terrorism Act), AFSPA to muzzle the dissent voices, rigged elections in 1987, booked elected people in jails and declared them militants are now asking for majority to revoke PSA. Illogical!" the PDP tweeted.

Reacting to the PDP criticism, Omar Abdullah said: "I was expecting this panic reaction. Thank you for not disappointing me. You had a chance after 2014 when you people were praising PM (Narendra) Modi to the skies. Why didn't you revoke PSA or attempt to have AFSPA removed?"

The National Conference leader said now people could choose the PDP and keep the PSA or choose his party to remove it.

"To those of you Kashmiri leaders who are questioning @JKNC_ 's PSA related commitment I have simply this to say - you should have used your friendly ties with BJP to do it earlier. Now people have a choice vote for you to keep PSA or vote @JKNC_ to remove it," he added.
PTI
first published: Jan 31, 2019 05:38 pm

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