SRINAGAR: Four years after three young men were killed in a fake encounter in Machil, the Army has convicted five of its personnel, including two officers in connection with the case. All the convicts have been sentenced for life.
According to reports, the General Court Martial sentenced Col DK Pathania of the 4 Rajput regiment (the unit which was involved in the encounter), Captain Upendra Singh, Subedar Satbir Singh, Havildar Bir Singh, Sepoy Chadraban, Sepoy Nagendra Singh and Sepoy Narinder Singh.
On May 03, 2010, army gunned down three civilians Shezad Ahmad Khan, Muhammad Shafi Lone and Riyaz Ahmad Lone, all from Nadihal village in Baramulla district near the Line of Control (LoC) in Machil sector of Kupwara district.
The army had then said they were three Pakistani militants who were killed while trying to infiltrate into the Kashmir Valley.
Anger had swept across Kashmir after the killing of three youth. The incident had sown the seeds of the 2010 agitation which killed 120 people in Kashmir.
Police had promptly registered a case and filed a 600-page chargesheet in the local court at Sopore charging 11 men including surrendered militants Bashir Ahmad Lone, Abdul Hamid, Syed Abbas of Territorial Army, Colonel DK Pathania who was commanding officer of 4-Rajput, Major Moriya, who was the adjutant and Major Upinder.
Army had ordered a high level court of enquiry by a brigadier level officer which has submitted the report after collecting the summary of evidence recommending the court martial proceedings against six men including Col Pathania, Major Upinder and four other ranks.
Reports later surfaced revealed that Shahzad, Shafi and Riyaz had been lured by surrendered militants to work as porters for the army and promised good money for the job. Army took them to LOC where they killed them in a staged encounter branding them infiltrators, three days after they went missing.
However, on December 2013, Indian army decided to court martial six of its men including a colonel and major.
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