Masarat Alam Sent to Jammu Jail: Could Spend 2 Years Behind Bars

J&K Separatist Masarat Alam charged under PSA, sent to Kot Balwal Jail in Jammu. He could be behind bars for 2 years.

2 min read
Kashmiri separatist leader Masarat Alam speaks on his mobile phone at his residence in Srinagar. (Photo: Reuters)

Hardline separatist Masarat Alam, who was arrested last week on sedition charges, has now been slapped with the stringent Public Safety Act (PSA) by the state government of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Public Safety Act allows the state to keep him in prison without trial for a time period of up to two years.

The 47-year-old separatist was arrested on April 17 and sent to seven day police custody in Budgam following his Pakistan flag-waving stint in Srinagar. He was moved, however, on Thursday, to Kot Balwal Jail in Jammu.

Alam has been booked under Sections 121-A (Waging war against the country), 124 (Sedition), 120-B (Criminal Conspiracy), 147 (Rioting) of Ranbir Penal Code (RPC) and other minor offences.

Decision After Court Reserved Bail Plea

The J&K government decided to charge Alam under PSA after the Budgam court reserved his bail plea verdict until April 25, according to a report in the Deccan Chronicle. It allows the government to keep Alam in prison irrespective of whether the court grants him bail.

Sedition Charges Against Alam

Alam, who was released by the PDP-led government last month after spending over four years in jail, was arrested again on April 17 on charges of waging war against the country and sedition after he hoisted the Pakistani flag and chanted anti-national slogans during a rally organised for hardline Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani.

He had applied for bail before Chief Judicial Magistrate Budgam which heard the arguments of the prosecution and the petitioner’s counsel on Wednesday.

(With inputs from PTI)

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