A Special National Investigation Agency (NIA) Court in India has sentenced incarcerated Jammu & Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) leader Yasin Malik to life in prison in the terror-funding case against him.
The JKLF, a Kashmiri separatist movement, is considered a ‘banned organization’ in India, and is accused of instigating terrorism. The group demands either separation, or a merger with Pakistan.
Malik had previously pleaded guilty to the charges against him, saying he will accept hanging if the charges against him are proven.
The NIA had sought maximum punishment for Malik – the death penalty, while the amicus curiae appointed by the court for Malik’s assistance had sought minimum punishment – life imprisonment.
The sentence hearing was presided by Special NIA judge Parveen Singh, and heavy security was present in the courtroom throughout the proceedings.
Judge Parveen Singh also imposed a fine of 10 lakh Indian rupees on him. He has been sentenced to life imprisonment under under Section 121 of the Indian Penal Code, which pertains to waging war against the state.
The JKLF leader was already jailed in Indian-occupied Jammu since March 2019, when in April 2019 the National Investigation Agency (NIA) arrested him again in a two-year-old case of ‘terrorism and terror funding’.
The NIA moved him to Tihar Jail, where he has been held in solitary confinement since April 2019. His family and associates have complained of him being denied the rights afforded to all prisoners, and claim that they haven’t been allowed to see him.
Previously, on May 23, his wife Mushaal Hussein Mullick, had appealed to Imran Khan in a press conference on Sunday, to stand up for Yasin and the Kashmiri cause.
She reminded Imran of his friendship with the incarcerated leader, and asked him to either dedicate his upcoming long march to Yasin Malik and the Kashmiri cause, or to move it forward by a few days.