SRINAGAR: A cloud of sorrow engulfed three families in Rajouri district, Jammu and Kashmir, as the Army Tribunal halted the sentence of Captain Bhoopendra Singh, granting him conditional bail in the Amshipora fake encounter.
The incident involves the deaths of Imtiyaz Hussain, Ibrar Hussain, and Mohammad Abrar from Dharsakri and Tarkasi villages in the border district. The three labourers, who had travelled to Shopian in the Kashmir Valley, were allegedly labelled as terrorists and killed by troops under Captain Singh’s command on July 18, 2020.
In March, the Army officer faced a court-martial, receiving a life sentence from an Army court after a Court of Inquiry. The subsequent summary of evidence revealed that troops under Captain Singh’s command had exceeded their powers under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act.
“What should I say now,’’ lamented Mohammad Abrar’s 65-year-old father, Mohammad Yousuf Khan, to the Indian Express. “Even today, his four-year-old son, Hanees, was asking me where his father is,’’ he said. Khan disclosed that they were twice summoned to Kashmir during the court-martial proceedings. “Captain Bhoopendra Singh had confessed to have killed our children,’’ Khan stated, adding that the troops had taken away an essential member of his family.
“Now the suspension of his sentence and release on bail has only reopened our old wounds as it means that they have put a price tag of only Rs 10 lakh on the life of my son,” the bereaved father said. When Captain Singh was sentenced, they had no words to thank the Army and the government for getting them justice, recalled a close relative of Mohammad Ibrar.
A member from each of the families of Imtiyaz and Ibrar secured jobs in the Sheep Department of the J&K government just last month, Khan mentioned. He added that the three families had received Rs 10 lakh each as ex gratia.