Kupwara marks massacre anniversary with shutdown

KUPWARA: A complete shutdown was observed in frontier district Kupwara to mark the 20th anniversary of the massacre of 27 civilians including three policemen allegedly by the soldiers of 31 Indian Medium Regiment in the town. 

The markets remained closed and transport was off the roads. Government offices and banks also noticed thin attendance in the town. Congregational Fateah Khawani was held at Shaheed Mazaar, Kupwara. People paid rich tributes to the martyrs and said that their sacrifices will always be remembered.

Chairman International Forum for Justice Muhammad Ahsan Untoo staged a peaceful protest in Main Chowk Kupwara. The families of the victims joined him. Police swung into action and arrested Untoo. Besides Untoo, police arrested Abdul Aziz Ahangar and Waseem Ahmed.

Locals allege that Indian army carried out the massacre on Jan 27, 1994 as vengeance for a shutdown on Jan 26.  

A FIR registered by Police vide number 19/1994 reads that, “in a criminal assault, the soldiers of 31 Medium Regiment who were on road opening party duty led by field officer S Bakshi gunned down scores of people in indiscriminate firing in Kupwara market and its vicinity without any provocation.”

Amoung the killed three were policemen and one was a government employee. Most of the killed in cold blood by Army were traders.

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