#Day27: One tortured, One Killed, Tragedy of Lethpora Family

By Sheikh Hilal

SRINAGAR

Farooq Ahmad Kuchay (KL Image courtesy: Kashmir Reader)
Farooq Ahmad Kuchay, slain. (KL Image courtesy: Kashmir Reader)

Tragedy has stuck Kuchay family of Lethpora for the second time on August 2, when their youngest member Farooq, 25, a driver, was killed by a PSO of ADC Ramban.

In 1991, Farooq’s elder brother, Riyaz, a Pakistan trained militant was killed by army during interrogation. A few years later Riyaz’s father died too.

After their father’s death, Farooq became the sole bread earner for his 55-year-old mother and brother, Mohammad Yaseen, 27, who is deaf-and-dumb since birth.

Farooq was part of the protests that erupted in Lethpora village against “highhandedness of forces”. “They (forces) came late in the evening and started destroying public property. They also beat some youth,” said a local resident who wished not to be named.

After forces left, people assembled near Srinagar-Jammu highway, and began shouting slogans. “A fast moving SUV (Scorpio), tried to cut through the people. We just wanted to stop it. But instead of stopping, the PSO of the ADC Ramban, started firing at people indiscriminately,” said Firdous Ahmad, Farooq’s brother. “My brother (Farooq) died on the spot. It is simply murder.”

Farooq, who was engaged to a girl from Magam village in north Kashmir, was supposed to meet her for the first time on August 3, a day after he was killed. “He was supposed to get married after Eid-ul-Adha,” said Firdous tearfully.

When Farooq’s would-be in-laws reached Lethpora to mourn his death, a spell of gloom fell over entire village, leaving everybody in tears.

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