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J&K: People's Conference chairman Sajjad Lone released from house arrest

Lone, a former minister in the PDP-BJP coalition government from BJP quota, was among the mainstream leaders to be detained immediately after scrapping of Article 370.

Published: 31st July 2020 02:19 PM  |   Last Updated: 31st July 2020 03:21 PM   |  A+A-

Peoples Conference chairman Sajjad Gani Lone (File Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir government on Friday released separatist-turned-politician and People's Conference chairman Sajjad Gani Lone from house detention.

The authorities lifted the curbs on the movement of Lone, who was under house arrest at his official residence at Church Lane in the city.

“Finally, 5 days short of a year I have been officially informed that I am a free man. So much has changed. So have I. Jail was not a new experience. Earlier ones were harsh with usual doses of physical torture. But this was psychologically draining. Much to share hopefully soon (sic),” Sajjad tweeted.

Lone, a former minister in the PDP-BJP coalition government from BJP quota, was among the mainstream leaders to be detained immediately after scrapping of Article 370 and split of J&K state into two Union Territories (UTs) by Centre on August 5 last year.

After his detention, Lone along with other leaders was lodged at Centaur Hotel on the banks of Dal Lake. While the rest of the leaders were shifted to MLAs' hostel after the onset of winter, Lone was put under house arrest in his government accommodation on February 5 this year.

Sajjad was part of the August 4 Gupkar declaration of Kashmir-based mainstream parties, which has stressed to protect and safeguard Article 370, which granted special status to J&K.

Sajjad had aligned with the BJP just before 2014 Assembly polls after his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

After the meeting, he told a newspaper that the PM spoke about how he wanted Kashmir's citizens to live happily and with dignity.

“I cannot tell you how humble he is. He was talking as if I was the Prime Minister and not him. It was like two brothers talking to each other,” Sajjad had then said.

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