Letter folded into a tiny square, rolled into a chapatti, smuggled in a lunch box. This is how a former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister communicated with her daughter in Kashmir. In a tweet, shared on Mehbooba Mufti’s social media profile, Ilitija disclosed how she managed to communicate with her mother despite her being in detention for the past six months.
Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has been under preventive custody since August 5, when Centre abrogated Article 370 stripping Jammu and Kashmir of its statehood and dividing the state in two Union Territories.
“Words escape me to describe the past six months since reading down of Article 370 followed by my mother’s detention. In particular I will never forget the week that she was arrested and jailed,” Ilitija said in a long post.
She explained how Mehbooba Mufti managed to smuggle small notes for her from detention.
“I spent next few days riddled with anxiety until I received a crumpled and tersely worded note, the first of many furtively exchanged letters. I found it in a tiffin box that contained home cooked food sent for her,” Ilitija said.
Mehbooba Mufti’s note for Iltija warned her against using her Twitter profile on her behalf. “They have taken an undertaking that I won’t be using social media to communicate. In case someone else does it, he will be booked on charges of impersonation. Love you and miss you a lot,” Mehbooba Mufti wrote in her first note to her daughter. According to Ilitija, many notes followed.
Explaining how she sent her notes back to her mother, Iltija said, “My grandmother found an ingenious solution. The letter I wrote was folded into a tiny square and carefully sealed, rolled and locked inside the middle of a chapatti.”
Iltija has claimed that she was able to communicate via these notes with her mother despite a very heavy security at the state guest house, where she was put up for six months. According to sources, even as she will be most likely shifted to her residence soon she will remain under house arrest as she has been charged under Public Safety Act (PSA).
Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) February 6, 2020
Iltija Mufti, who has been regularly posting on her mother’s behalf, on Thursday said that even after 180 days of abrogation of Article 370, Kashmiris continue to be deprived of fundamental rights and have suffered grave economic and psychological tribulations.
In the post, she said that for now, the government has shown utter disregard for constitution and is willing to sacrifice values of equality, fraternity and social justice at the altar of power.
“Whether it’s Ayodhya verdict or communal CAA, it’s painfully obvious that sowing seeds of division, bigotry and demonising minorities will define the agenda of a government that enjoys unparalleled impunity due to a brute mandate,” Iltija said.
Claiming that as a child she saw her mother fight for boys wrongfully detained, Ilitja said that she is fighting the battle to free her mother. “Life has come full circle. We live to fight another day,” she said.