Bodies of Rajouri youths killed in encounter will be exhumed, say police

Army jawans stand guard near encounter site in Amshipora area of Shopian in south Kashmir on July 18, 2020.   | Photo Credit: Nissar Ahmad

Three families from Rajouri, whose kin were killed in an encounter on July 18 in south Kashmir’s Shopian, will be allowed to exhume their bodies, the police said on Wednesday.

“Since the DNA samples matched with the families, the three dead bodies will be exhumed and handed over to families after the due process of law,” Inspector General of Police (IGP) Vijay Kumar told The Hindu.

The district administration of Rajouri has approached the families to begin the process.

“We have been called by the Rajouri administration for consultations. We demand immediate exhumation of bodies of our sons, compensation, and punishment to those involved in the fake encounter,” Muhammad Yousuf, father of one of the victims, said.

The graveyard where the bodies were buried after the encounter is located in north Kashmir’s Baramulla, far from civilian areas.

Three youth from the Pir Panjal valley’s Rajouri, identified as Abrar Ahmed (25), Imtiyaz Ahmed (20) and Mohammed Ibrar (16), were termed “unidentified militants” after a joint operation conducted by the police and the Army on July 18 in Shopian’s Amshipora area.

However, three families from Rajouri contested the security forces’ version, claiming all three to be labourers who went missing the day the encounter was carried out. On September 25, the DNA samples of the slain youth was found to match that of the families.

The police have arrested two locals, including a Special Police Officer from Poonch, so far. They are accused of “tipping off about the presence of militants in the area”.

The police claim to have recovered “incriminating materials, including arms and ammunition, at the site of encounter”.

The Army has already initiated disciplinary proceedings under the Army Act against those found prima facie answerable.

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Printable version | Sep 21, 2021 12:52:25 AM |

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