Altaf Shah, the son-in-law of late Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani, was a prominent member of the separatist group Tehreek e Hurriyat.
Afnan Habib | TwoCircles.net
NEW DELHI — Incarcerated Kashmiri Hurriyat leader Altaf Ahmad Shah died of cancer at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi on Tuesday morning, only days after being transferred from Tihar Jail on the orders of the Delhi High Court.
Ruwa Shah, Altaf Shah’s daughter, confirmed her father’s death in a tweet, saying, “Abu (father) breathed his last at AIIMS, New Delhi. As a prisoner.”
Abu breathed his last at AIIMS, New Delhi. As a prisoner. https://t.co/EqxGyappW0
— Ruwa Shah (@ShahRuwa) October 10, 2022
Altaf Shah, the son-in-law of late Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani, was a prominent member of the separatist group Tehreek e Hurriyat. Shah, along with some other separatist leaders, was arrested by the National Investigating Agency (NIA) in 2017 in an alleged terror funding case.
Altaf Shah’s health was progressively deteriorating over the years due to alleged medical negligence. In late September, he was found to have acute kidney carcinoma, which, according to his daughter, had “spread to other parts of his body, including his bones.”
The Delhi High Court, on October 5, had ordered the shifting of Shah from (RML) Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, where he was under custody treatment. According to Shah’s daughter, The RML hospital lacked adequate facilities to treat renal cancer. “The petitioner is also diagnosed with Renal Cancer, although there is no such medical document submitted on behalf of the petitioner. However without going into the merits of the case as the right to have adequate and suitable treatment is the part of a fundamental right as enshrined in article 21 of the Constitution and after considering the totality of the circumstances and in the interest of justice it is ordered that the petitioner be shifted to AIIMS, Delhi for appropriate treatment under the judicial custody and direct supervision of the concerned jail superintendent and after following all necessary security measure”, the court had said. The court had also permitted his daughter or son to meet with him once daily for one hour.
Shah is survived by his wife, a son and two daughters. Shah’s son Anees ul Islam, the oldest among the siblings, had lost his government job in October 2021 under section 311 (2) (C) for being a “threat to the security of the state”.
Afnan Habib is an independent journalist based in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir. He tweets at @afnanhabib_