Impartial Probe Needed in Sopore Killings

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The killing of innocent civilians is quite unacceptable, and what appear to be the targeted killings are especially deplorable and unpardonable, because this represents a complete breakdown of law and order and respect for justice exercised through civilized process which is the hallmarks of contemporary political and social ideals. 

When we look for evidence of who might be committing these crimes, the options narrow down rather quickly. The government blames a non-descript group called Lashkar-e-Islam (leI).  But such a group has never been active in Kashmir, has no known members, no known leadership, and may be someone’s figment of a wild imagination. No one knows what LeI’s agenda is, or who is behind it. More likely, it is an intentional lie.

In an editorial on June 16, 2015, Jammu based the Kashmir Times said, “There are serious flaws in the official versions… It has become the wont of the official circles to circulate both contradictions or the invocation of ‘terrorist’, ‘suspect’ and ‘heavy stone pelting’ to justify wrongful killings.”

Some suspect that these target killings are the brainchild of Mr. Manohar Parriker, India’s defence minister, who wants to use a covert operation to fight the Kashmiri freedom struggle. Such suspicions are reinforced by Mr. Parriker’s own statement last month when he said, “You have to neutralize terrorist through terrorist only.” Even Omar Abdullah, the former Chief Minister of Jammu & Kashmir, has accused the Defence Minister of being behind the operation. These executioners are being used as the instrument of terror.

Mr. Parriker added, “Many attempts have been foiled and many neutralizations have taken place… if you see, recent incidents… Army knew about the hideout of the terrorists, they took them on at the place of their hiding… Security forces go by the guarantee of the government standing by them… and I can tell as a Defence Minister, I stand by the Army at any cost.”

These murders of Kashmiri civilians by anonymous killers are nothing new. New Delhi has used this phenomenon for many years.

It was confirmed by Wajahat Habibullah, former minister of community affairs at Embassy of India in Washington, D.C. who wrote in his book “My Kashmir- Conflict and The Prospects Of Enduring Peace” on page 81-82 that, “”In April 1993, the chief ideologue of the JKLF, Dr. Abdul Ahad Guru was kidnapped and brutally murdered by the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen militant Zulqarnain”. “The Police made an arrangement with Zulqarnain, then in custody, who agreed to kill Guru in exchange for his release. But to ensure that this collusion remained secret, Zulqarnain was killed shortly thereafter and the Director General of Police BS Bedi trumpeted his death as a triumph for the security forces”.

Likewise, ‘unidentified gunmen’ killed 36 innocent Kashmiris belonging to the Sikh religion at Chittisingpora in March 2000 during President Clinton visit to India. Dr. Farooq Abdullah, former Chief Minister of Jammu Kashmir said in February 2008 that “there were some people who tried to scuttle the Chittisinghpora investigations. Some investigators were even threatened. I want to reveal the conspiracy behind the massacre, but as I am under an oath, I cannot do so”. We know exactly what Dr. Farooq Abdullah does not want to say.

The people suspect that the PDP-BJP is under pressure to take steps to repeal the AFSPA. The government wants to create a situation so as to justify its presence in Kashmir and not to repeal AFSPA.

The people of Kashmir  believe that human rights are cheapened when enforcement is selective. Therefore, they demand an impartial investigation so that culprits are brought to justice. Such an investigation has to be done by a neutral and international agency, like Mr. Christof Heyns, ‘United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extra-judicial Killings.’

Dr. Ghulam Nabi Fai

Secretary General

World Kashmir Awareness

 gnfai2003@yahoo.com

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