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HindustanTimes Sat,30 Aug 2014

Separatist Faktoo comes up with book in jail

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times   Srinagar, April 23, 2013
First Published: 18:33 IST(23/4/2013) | Last Updated: 18:34 IST(23/4/2013)

Facing lifer, incarcerated separatist leader Ashiq Hussain Faktoo on Tuesday released his book through Srinagar's High Court Bar Association (HCBA) to put spotlight on his case and sentence, which he described as "outcome of a politics vendetta".

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"To make public aware about my case, I have compiled a book exclusively based on court judgments, government orders and some articles," wrote Faktoo, widely known as Dr Muhammad Qasim Faktoo, in his letter written from the Srinagar Central Jail to the HCBA.

Faktoo has named the compilation 'Twenty years of imprisonment: Dr Muhammad Qasim Faktoo - A case of political vendetta'. Faktoo, who was awarded life term till death for his role in the murder of human rights activist lawyer HN Wanchoo in 1992, is husband of radical Islamist group Dukhtaran-e-Millat chief Asiya Andrabi. He also figured in an explosive haul case but was later exonerated by the TADA court in Jammu.

Faktoo, who completed a doctorate degree in Islamic studies in the jail 2006, has written extensively on the circumstances under which his confession report was compiled in the book. It was on the basis of his confession that he was awarded a life sentence last year by the high court.

Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chief Yasin Malik, who attended the book release function, suggested that the fresh sentences being awarded in two decade old cases are being delivered under a definite plan.

"India and Pakistan have been engaged in a political dialogue for the past two years and people here expected CBMs on ground. Instead, the courts have suddenly started issuing life sentences till death. At least 32 freedom fighters face such sentences and around a dozen in just two years," said Malik.

Malik claimed that international diplomats and the civil society have approached him in jail to switch to peaceful struggle. "It was on their assurances we switched to peaceful struggle as we were promised of support to reach a political solution to the Kashmir issue. But where are those voices now?" asked Malik, who also faces a case in TADA court. "Indian state is playing foul with the leadership of Kashmir through the dialogue process."


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