Justice eludes man whose son’s death sparked protests

Human rights panel refuses to give judicial commission’s report to the father

March 01, 2017 03:00 am | Updated 03:01 am IST - Srinagar

Anger on streets: Students protesting against the death of Tufail Mattoo in Srinagar in 2010.

Anger on streets: Students protesting against the death of Tufail Mattoo in Srinagar in 2010.

The State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) has dismissed the application moved by Ashraf Mattoo, whose son Tufail Mattoo died in a widely-reported police firing in Srinagar in 2010, where he sought a copy of the Koul commission.

‘Application dismissed’

SHRC chairman Justice Bilal Nazki, in response to the application move by Mr. Mattoo, said, “This request is outside the jurisdiction of this commission (SHRC). The application is dismissed.”

Mr Mattoo’s 17-year-old son died in police firing on June 11 in 2010, sparking a five-month-long cycle of violence.

On June 19, 2014, the government appointed a one-man judicial commission headed by Justice M.L Koul to probe the 2010 killing.

Quoting Mr. Nazki’s recent statement where he asked people “to approach the Commission even in case a patwari refuses to issue any revenue paper,” Mr. Mattoo said “Mr. Nazki saw human rights violation in case a patwari refuses a document. But what is holding back the SHRC from issuing a direction to seek a copy of report of the Commission. It is my rightful plea to have the copy of the Commission report before which I deposed and cooperation with the hope to get justice.”

Mr. Mattoo said the State and its institutions seem “out to kill the idea of justice by such acts.”

Earlier in January, the Commission refused to share its findings with Mr. Mattoo. The officials at the tribunal in Srinagar denied him access to the retired report, in which 60 civilian killings were re-investigated.

“I filed an application for the report in the first week of January. I am told that I will get access only to a small portion of the report. Isn’t it my right to get a copy of the report of which I have been a part since its formation in 2014,” Mr. Mattoo said.

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