Ex-sarpanch killed in fake encounter: Cong.

Published - December 02, 2016 02:41 am IST - Srinagar:

The Congress has refuted the Army claim to have killed a “militant” in an operation in south Kashmir on Thursday and alleged that a “former sarpanch” was shot dead in a “fake encounter.”

An Army spokesman said the troops killed a militant, Sajad Malik alias Bitta, in an operation in Anantnag district’s Dooru area, 76 km south of Srinagar.

Deceased Malik, reportedly a former militant, had contested the 2011 Panchayat polls from a Dooru village with the Congress backing.

However, Malik dissociated himself from the Congress and allegedly led anti-Indian protests in the past four months.

J-K Pradesh Congress Committee president and former minister G.A. Mir described his killing in an Army operation as “a cold-blooded murder.”

“The slain being a Congress worker was victimised and killed in a fake encounter. The deceased was in the police custody over a month. He was booked on charges of stone-pelting and law and order issues. He may have joined hundreds and lakhs of people who hit the streets in the past four years. There was public pressure on ex-sarpanches to join protests,” Mr. Mir told The Hindu.

He alleged Malik was provided with a policeman on Thursday. “The policeman dropped him near Agnu village, two km away from his native place, on a bike. A joint cordon of the Army and the CRPF was in place. Minutes after he was dropped by the policeman, gunshots were heard in the area. It seems a cold blooded murder,” Mr. Mir alleged.

He alleged that Malik was asked by the senior police officials to seek reference of a BJP or a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) MLA for his release.

“Despite the fact, the court had granted bail, Malik was not released by the police. It’s duty of Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti to come clean and have a probe into it,” he said.

The Congress has demanded a judicial probe in the killing.

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