Row over age of Kashmir boy held under PSA
The family of Faizan Rafiq Hakeem, who was arrested under the Public Safety Act from Anantnag and taken to a Jammu jail last week, has alleged that the detention was illegal as the boy was a minor.
The police maintain Hakeem, who was arrested for his involvement in last year’s protests, is about 20 years of age.
Hakeem’s family has produced a birth certificate, which shows he is 14 years and nine months old. His school certificate, signed by Islamia Hanfia College Islamabad, shows he was born in May 1996. “How can they book my son under PSA, he is just 14 and how can this happen when the CM has said that no minors will be booked under the Act?” said Mohd Rafiq, Hakeem’s father.
Chief minister Omar Abdullah said the best way to ascertain the boy’s age was to “conduct a medical test”. “Best way to settle any doubts is to order a medical examination to certify the age. I’ve seen too many fake certificates,” Omar wrote on micro-blogging site Twitter.
Hakeem, the only child of a vegetable vendor, was among the three people booked under the Act in the south Kashmir district last week.
“We have his photographs with us and he seems to be around 20-years-old,” SHO of Saddar police station Liaqat Khan said.