The father of a youth, who was killed in the alleged Lawaypora fake encounter on December 30, is among seven booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) by the J&K police for organising a protest on Friday, where they demanded the return of the body.
A police officer confirmed to The Hindu that Mushtaq Ahmad Wani, father of Athar Mushtaq Wani from Pulwama, who was among the three killed in the encounter, was booked for “organising illegal procession under criminal conspiracy and were abetting anti-national elements”.
According to the FIR lodged under No. 07/2021, Mr. Wani, his family members and locals assembled immediately after the noon prayers near Jamia Masjid in Abu Bakr village in Pulwama.
“A violent mob appeared on the road. Wani and his brothers were leading the mob,” according to the FIR. Around five family members are among those booked under the UAPA.
Eyewitnesses told The Hindu that Mr. Wani had organised the special prayer at the empty grave dug by him for his son, who was buried far off on a hillock in central Kashmir “to avoid any assembly during funeral” as per new police protocol.
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Mr. Wani has been organising protests for the past one month demanding the body of the Class 11 student. According to the police records, Athar was an over ground worker of the militants and not a categorised militant.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti took to Twitter to express her surprise over the police move. “After losing his son in an alleged fake encounter, Athar Mushtaq’s father has been slapped with an FIR for demanding his body. His crime was to stage a peaceful protest. The inhabitants of Naya Kashmir can’t even question a callous admin & have been reduced to living corpses,” she said.