Shopian remembers Aasiya Jan, Neelofar on 8th anniversary

Shopian, Iok

Complete shutdown was observed in south Kashmir’s Shopian district on the eighth death anniversary of Aasiya Jan and Neelofar Shakeel who were found dead in a stream on this day in 2009. Locals say the two were raped and murdered by men in uniform.
Business establishments, schools and shops remained closed in the town and adjoining areas, while public transport was off the roads.
The death of Aasiya and Neelofar had triggered widespread protests across the Kashmir valley in 2009 and Shopian area witnessed consecutive shutdown for 49 days.
Aasiya (17) and her sister-in-law Neelofar (21) went missing after they left for their orchard. Their bodies were recovered from a stream the next day.
The villagers alleged that the women were raped and murdered by government forces, a charge denied by then Omar Abdullah-led state government. The then government termed it a case of drowning.
Following public outcry, the government ordered a judicial inquiry while as police constituted Special Investigating Team (SIT) who in their reports did not rule out rape and murder.—GK

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