Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti is in solitary confinement without access to lawyers or party workers, her daughter Iltija Javed told NDTV on Tuesday, as the centre pushed massive changes to the state through parliament amid a security crackdown and communications blackout.
"My mother was taken yesterday. She has been detained in this government guesthouse called Hari Niwas... we haven't been allowed to get in touch with her. I am not allowed to see her. There's been absolutely no communication because all landlines, cellphones, everything here is down," Ms Javed said.
She spoke to NDTV via audio messages as almost all lines of communication with Kashmir have been snapped by the government to prevent a backlash to its decisions - revoking the state's special status and splitting it into two union territories.
Mehbooba Mufti - who was placed under house arrest around midnight on Sunday along with National Conference leader Omar Abdullah - was arrested and taken from her home in Srinagar to a nearby government guest house on Monday.
"She's been put in solitary confinement. My mother doesn't have access to lawyers or party workers. Just to prove a point and spite Kashmiris, they can go to any extent. This whole excuse of putting them under house arrest because they are going to instigate the people just doesn't make any sense," Iltija Javed said.
"It's not about my mother or about Omar. I think even the government of India realises what they've done is illegal and people here are not going to take it lying down... they are treating elected representatives like thugs, like criminals," she added.
The face-off between the opposition and the government over moves to scrap special privileges granted to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of the constitution - like the ability to frame its own laws - and bifurcate the state moved to the Lok Sabha on Tuesday.
"This is a historic moment India. What we're discussing today will impact generations," Home Minister Amit Shah said in the lower house while presenting the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, which was passed easily thanks to the government's overwhelming majority.
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