Iltija Mufti on Mehbooba Mufti’s Detainment

Most of Kashmir’s leaders have reportedly been detained since the disputed territory was stripped of its special autonomous status in August. Among them is former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti. Her daughter joins the program from New Delhi to try and get a near-silent international community to listen.

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CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR: But let me ask you about your mother. As I mentioned, the former chief minister, who at one point, had been in coalition with Prime Minister Modi’s BJP Party and then he pulled support from that. And now, what is her situation? Is she detained? So many of the Kashmiri political leaders have been detained. What is her situation? Do you fear for her safety?

ILTIJA MUFTI, DAUGHTER OF MEHBOOBA MUFTI, FORMER CHIEF MINISTER OF KASHMIR: Yes, I have concerns about her wellbeing. And I think that the Indian government has intentionally obliterated the ground between pro-India politicians and separatists. And, you know, by doing this, they’ve obviously put pro-India, you know, politicians in a lot of danger. Now, I’ve expressed concerns about the wellbeing of my mother. And yesterday, I tweeted out a letter which I sent to the administration for my — you know, on my mother’s behalf and I’ve expressed apprehensions about her health and how the Indian government has responded is by curtailing my visits to see my mother. And clearly, there — you know, this is some kind of a witch hunt and a vendetta and they’re being very vindictive and it’s completely unfair. To this day, three months after she was taken away from, you know, her family, I don’t understand on what grounds has she been detained because they think that she’s going to articulate the pain of her people. Is that a crime? Is it a crime to articulate the pain of Kashmiris, how we feel? Because last I checked, this was very much a constitutional democracy. This doesn’t feel like a constitutional democracy anymore.

AMANPOUR: Well, it’s interesting you say that, of course, because India always touts itself as the world’s biggest democracy in terms of most populous. And clearly, as you say, these, you know, credentials are being questioned or under the microscope now. Where is your mother? You say she’s been taken away from her family. Where is she?

MUFTI: So, they decided to keeper in in a government-owned house that’s been declared as a sub jail and she’s been kept in solitary confinement, Christiane. And I don’t feel there was the need to take her away from us because, anyways, the state is under, you know, a complete curfew and it’s an unprecedented siege, the lacks of troops that are patrolling the streets of Kashmir and they have just taken her to break her spirit, to break her emotionally and to — you know, she’s been told that if she wants to be released, she has to sign this illegal bond which basically says that if she — her release is dependent on signing this bond. And once she signs the bond, she can’t even utter a word and she cannot, you know, hold public meetings, rallies or even talk to people or the media itself.

About This Episode EXPAND

Scott Jennings and John Nichols join Christiane Amanpour to analyze the results from yesterday’s state elections in the U.S. Iltija Mufti calls for international attention to the chaos in Kashmir. Leonard Kleinrock and Vint Cerf sit down with Miles O’Brien to discuss the 50th anniversary of the internet’s creation.