High Court orders CBI inquiry into Sailan massacre


KL Desk

High court orders CBI inquiry into the Sailan massacre in which 19 persons were killed. The order was given on Wednesday after 14 years of the massacre by Justice Muzaffar Hussain Attar.

On the intervening night of 3 and 4 August 1998, 19 persons [6 male and 13 female] were killed at the house of Hassan Mohammad Sheikh in Sailan, Surankote, Poonch. The police filed FIR no. 122/1998 at Surankote Police Station on 4 August 1998 and stated that the massacre was perpetrated by the foreign militants.

SHRC conducted an inquiry and in its report on October 21, 1998 they ruled out the involvement of militants in the massacre and instead implicated the army and the police in the killings.  The SHRC recommended an inquiry into the case.

In 2011, the families of the victims of Sailan massacre filed a petition with their counsel Advocate Parvaiz Imroz for re-investigation in the case before the High Court. A status report, on September 19, 2012, by the SHO, Surankote Police Station stated that the case was investigated and closed on three occasions.

Further, closure report presented before court as the relevant documents could not be retrieved from the court or the police offices. The office of the Sub Divisional Police Officer [SDPO], Mendhar, where the file last reached, was gutted in a fire in September 2010. It was on this status report that the High Court ordered an investigation by the CBI, reads an official statement of Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCS).

“Today’s order, while welcome, is also an indictment of the Jammu and Kashmir Police that took no action for 14 years, and in fact sought to scuttle any fair investigations into the massacre. Further, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir promoted and awarded the alleged perpetrators of the massacre – such as DIG, J.P. Singh,” reads the statement.

We demand that the CBI inquiry should lead to the prosecution of all the accused in this case. Further, the Government on its own, without waiting for court interventions, should investigate all massacres – such as Gow Kadal, Hawal, Zakoora, Bijbehara, Wandhama, Chattisinghpora, Nadimarg, Chota Bazaar, Sopore, Handwara and Kupwara.


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