Separatist leader Yasin Malik goes on a hunger strike in Tihar jail

Yasin Malik, the leader of the Kashmiri Separatists and now housed in cell number 7 of the Tihar Jail has started a hunger strike, according to authorities on Saturday. According to a senior prison official who spoke to IANS, “Malik has been on a hunger strike since Friday am.”

On May 25, a special NIA court found Malik guilty in connection with a 2017 case involving the sponsorship of terrorism and gave him a life sentence.

When questioned about the cause of his hunger strike, the official withheld more information. Prison insiders claim that Malik is resisting the organizations looking into his charges.

The sources said Malik had entered an extended hunger strike because he claimed his case was not being thoroughly probed. Notably, Malik is kept apart from roughly 13,000 other prisoners and alone within the jail, not merely from the outside world.

Malik is being held at Jail No. 7, which has already housed several high-profile inmates, including Christian Michel, P. Chidambaram, a former union minister, and A. Raja, as well as Sahara CEO Subrata Roy.

The offender received five penalties totaling ten years of “Rigorous Imprisonment” and two life sentences from the court in its ruling.

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Rigorous incarceration is defined as the detention of the criminal in a way that, given the nature of the offense, makes the jail sentence more difficult by putting the offender through rigorous jail conditions.

Malik was not given any employment within the jail despite court directives. He won’t be allocated any labor for security considerations, a senior prison official told IANS, adding that the decision to assign employment is made following jail regulations.

Relevantly, a few months ago, Sukesh Chandrashekhar, another well-known prisoner, fought against the prison administration to see his wife more than twice a month.

As a result, he twice went on hunger strikes, the first for 10 days and the second for nine days in May. Sukesh requested a meeting with his wife, Leena Maria Paul, who is now held in cell no. 6 of Tihar Jail, according to the senior jail official. Sukesh was also given a prison sentence for his wrongdoing.