Mehbooba says she, her mother refused passports; HC dismisses her plea

Mehbooba Mufi said that the passport office has cited a CID report to refuse to issue them passports.

Srinagar: Former chief minister and Peoples Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti on Monday said she has been refused a passport. She tweeted to say that the passport office has cited a report of Jammu and Kashmir’s Criminal Investigation Department to refuse to issue her a passport.

“Passport Office refused to issue my passport based on CID’s report citing it as ‘detrimental to the security of India.’ This is the level of normalcy achieved in Kashmir since Aug 2019 that an ex-Chief Minister holding a passport is a threat to the sovereignty of a mighty nation,” tweeted Mufti.

The 61-year-old leader also tweeted to say that that the authorities had also rejected the application of her mother’s passport too.

“The passport office has also rejected my mother’s passport application. CID claims that my mother who is well into her seventies is a ‘threat to national security’ and therefore does not deserve a passport. The government of India is employing absurd methods to harass and punish me for not toeing their line,” she added.

She had also filed a petition in the Jammu and Kashmir High Court seeking expedition of the process to issue her a passport. The court dismissed her plea.

“Even otherwise, I am of the considered view that no direction can be issued by this court for issuance of passport in favour of the petitioner. The scope of this court in the matter of grant or otherwise of passport in favour of an individual is very limited…can only direct the concerned authorities to expeditiously consider the case of an individual in the light of the mandate of the scheme of law governing the subject,” the judge said.

Mufti had applied for a fresh passport on December 11 last year.

She was released in October last year after being placed under detention in August 2019, when the Centre had scrapped the state’s special status granted by the Constitution and bifurcated it into two Union Territories.

Reacting to the development, Omar Abdullah on Monday said that Mufti was not considered a threat to the nation when her party had been in alliance with the BJP.

“What a shame Jammu and Kashmir Police is going along with this farce. How is it that Mehbooba Mufti was not a threat to the nation when her party was allied with the BJP? As Chief Minister she was in-charge of the Home Department and head of the Unified Command, now suddenly she is a threat!” tweeted Abdullah.

Congress leader Raashid Alvi also condemned the refusal of passport to Mufti.

Speaking to ANI, Alvi said, “It is condemnable and unfortunate. A wrong message will go to the outer world. They fear if Mufti goes abroad, she will speak against them. They only care for their image not the image of the country.”
Currently, the PDP leader is being investigated by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with a money laundering case.

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