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Thursday, August 18, 2022

Now, Modi’s BJP demands probe into Srinagar ‘firefight’

A senior member of the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party on Sunday called for a probe into the gunfight in which goverment forced claimed to have killed three youth from south Kashmir districts. 

BJP General Secretary (Organisation) Ashok Koul told a local news agency that he has urged the J&K administration to investigate the Parimpur encounter to find out whether any wrong has been committed.

Talking to reporters at party headquarters in Srinagar, Koul, said: “If there is any wrong, that will come to fore. If there isn’t then it’s fine.”

 “Police have already stated that it was investigating the case. Let’s see what comes out,” Kaul said.

The ‘encounter’ has stirred tension in the Kashmir region, with Pulwama and Shopian shutting down in protest. Several parts of Kashmir, particularly Srinagar, observed a spontaneous shutdown Friday.

Families of the alleged militants — Ajaz Maqbool Ganai (20), Ather Mushtaq Wani (16) and Zubair Ahmed Lone (22) — protested outside the police control room in Srinagar on Wednesday to demand their bodies, and claimed the youth were innocent civilians. While Ajaz’s father is a J&K Police constable, Lone’s two older brothers are local police officials as well.

The J&K Police claimed Friday that it had cross-checked the claims made by the families, and digital evidence as well as background checks on two of three deceased had revealed that they were over-ground workers who provided logistical support to insurgents. 

The police had initially issued a statement Wednesday, claiming the killing of three youth and identifying them as militants. It said although the trio did not figure on the list of active militants, two of them were “hardcore associates of militants”.

Five days after his son was burried by police at an undisclosed location in Sonmarg area, Athar’s father in  Pulwama has dug up a second grave hoping to get back the body of his teenaged son who was killed along with two other youth in a controversial encounter in Srinagar.

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