Akhtar Biwi, wife of Liyaqat Shah whose arrest in the Capital has triggered a stand-off between the Jammu and Kashmir government and Delhi Police, has said they had made it clear that the family was travelling after clearance from the authorities under the rehabilitation policy.
“My husband told policemen that he had come to surrender under the rehabilitation policy after approval from the authorities but nobody listened to us,’’ said Biwi.
Biwi, who reached her village in Kupwara district with the couple’s teenage daughter Jabeen, who can’t hear and speak, on Saturday, said his arrest would stop the return of former militants under the rehabilitation policy.
“Hundreds of people in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir are waiting to come home and are yearning for their homeland. When this (the news of the arrests) gets splashed in the Pakistani media, who will come back to India?”’ Biwi asked. “This is a big blow to people who leave everything they have done in the past 15-20 years to return home. I feel cheated, and desire to go back if there was a way,” she added.
According to Biwi, the family was travelling on valid Pakistani passports and visas (as is the norm in the rehabilitation policy).
Biwi says she had travelled with another family of seven. “They had two families members waiting to receive them, but we had nobody. This may have been the reason why we were arrested,’’ she told reporters in her maternal village in Kralpora.