Custodial Death:Magisterial Enquiry No Answer, Says Ex-HC Judge

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SRINAGAR — Former J&K High Court Judge Hasnain Masoodi has strongly condemned the custodial death of a youth from Awantipora.

In a statement, Masoodi said that incidents like these are not only tragic and unfortunate but highly condemnable. Such incidents cannot be allowed to take place in a civilised society and custodial death in NIA custody reinforces the apprehension of people about safety of the political and religious leaders in the custody of NIA and others summoned to appear before it.
He said that it is high time to review the jurisdiction of NIA in the state and stop it from carrying out such and like acts in the state. Everybody has seen how the NIA has been misused in the state particularly in the valley to threaten and intimidate the people of the State for political considerations. Everyone in the State should be committed for withdrawal of NIA jurisdiction from the state.
He further stated that the investigation into the custodial death should be time bound and it must also ascertain the facts about wrongful and illegal detention by the NIA authorities.

Rizwan Asad Pandit (29), a resident of Awantipora area of Pulwama district, died in police custody during the intervening night of Monday and Tuesday after he was picked up by police from his home two days ago, police said.

Pandit was Principal at a private school namely Sabir Abdullah Jobwarara Awantipora.

The civil administration ordered a magisterial inquiry under Section 176 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) to ascertain the cause and circumstances leading to Pandit’s death.

Meanwhile, a police spokesman said Rizwan was picked up in connection with a “terror case” and had died in police custody.

 “In pursuance of terror case investigation, one suspect Rizwan Pandit resident of Awantipora was in police custody. The said person died in police custody. In this matter while following the procedure laid down in section 176 of CrPC a magisterial inquiry is underway. Separately, police investigation has also been initiated in the jurisdictional area of incident,” the spokesman said.

 


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