Rights activists question fate of probe ordered into 10 major cases

Srinagar

In occupied Kashmir, rights activists have deplored that nothing could be done in, at least, 10 major cases of rights violations in which army court of inquiry (CoI) were ordered in the past.
The rights activist while commenting on the call for disciplinary action against Major Leetul Gogoi by the army court of inquiry (CoI) their statements said, “There are cases in which forces had been indicted for kidnapping or killing but still pending because sanction for prosecution has not been granted.”
“For example, in Gaw Kadal massacre of 20 January 1990, when 53 civilians were killed by Central Reserve Police Force personnel, a CoI was ordered but not a single person has been booked yet,” the statement said. “A CoI was also by Border Security Force in Sopore massacre that took place on 6 January 1993. The BSF soldiers had killed 67 civilians and burnt dozens of shops and other structures. So far, the fate of the inquiry is not known.”
“On 25 January 1990, 25 civilians were killed and in October the same year 17 civilians were killed in Handwara by BSF soldiers. The fate of the inquiries into these massacres is not known.” “CoIs were ordered in a series of other massacres—Khanyar (8 March 1992), 22 civilians killed; Hawal (21 May 1990), toll 70; Bijbehara (22 October 1993), toll 52; Mashali Mohalla (8 August 1992) and Brakpora (25 March 2000), toll nine each.”
Muhammad Ahsan Untoo, Chairman of International Forum for Justice and Human Rights, in his statement said, “I have filed petitions in all these massacres and to my knowledge in every case the concerned forces’ agency had ordered CoI.
In many cases, forces personnel were identified who and indicted by the CoI but nobody knows whether any guilty soldier was punished,” he added. Untoo has filed applications in these massacres in either the Kashmir High Court or the Human Rights Commission. “In Hawal massacre the forces unit and the soldiers were identified during the course of investigation but there is no mention of punishment in the series of replies the Commission has got from the concerned security agency,” Untoo said.
Noted lawyer Mir Shafaqat Hussain said in his three-decade long career he is yet to come across a case where forces personnel were punished.—KMS

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