Families of civilian killed question Kashmir police version of terror supporterstext_fields
Srinagar: Hours after four-shot were dead in Srinagar and Jammu & Kashmir and police said they had busted a terror module, certain families have come forward challenging the police's claim, The Indian Express reported.
The families claimed that three of the dead were innocent and sought their bodies, which were already buried by the police. Brother of Altaf Ahmad Dar- one of the dead civilians- said that they have no hope for justice from those who had killed innocent civilians, but the family only wish to have his brother's body back since he was killed in the crossfire. Police had admitted so.
Meanwhile, Dr Mudasir Gul's- the other dead civilian- family held a funeral for him though his body was not returned. Gul's father said that the family had struggled all day to get his body but, the police was adamant against it.
On Tuesday, Inspector General (Kashmir) Vijay Kumar told the press that the police received intel that militants were staying at Hyderpora bypass. Police built a cordon at the building where the militants were residing. Since the police didn't know the exact location, they had brought the owner of the building, Altaf, and Gul, who rented the top three rooms of the building, to the spot.
Kumar said that police personnel returned fire in self-defence as militants opened the same. Attempts were made to rescue Altaf and Gul, but they were standing at a difficult spot and died at militants' pistol fire, police said. They were buried long with militants at Handwara.
Kumar claimed that Mudasir Gul was an "overground worker" (OGW). He was running an unauthorised call centre from the rented area. He was working with the militants, brought them to the building and lodged them. He also said that Gul used to bring militants from North and South Kashmir. But Gul's father said that these are stories were false and concocted by the police.
An eye witness confirmed that security personnel took Altaf and Gul to the building and added they didn't come back after gunshots were heard. The witness said that security personnel collected the nearby people's phone at 5:30 in the afternoon and only returned it by 12:30 am.
Kumar later told TIE that those who intentionally shelter active terrorists must know the potential consequences and operational hazards.
Meanwhile, prominent party leaders here demanded an impartial and credible inquiry on the killings. National Conference vice-president and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah and PDP chief Mehboba Mufti demanded a proper investigation of the police encounter.
The latter added that using innocent civilians as shields, getting them killed in crossfire, and later branding them as OGW is now a part of the Union government's rule book. This rampant culture of impunity needs to be ended, she said. People's Conference, CPM, All Parties Hurriyat Conference and the state Congress demanded an impartial inquiry on the encounter.