Shopian killing: Army files its version

Srinagar

The Indian army on Wednesday formally approached Jammu and Kashmir police with their version of the Shopian firing incident that left three civilians dead and reignited a debate over alleged excesses by government forces in the Kashmir valley, reports claimed.

people carrying funeral of Rayees for last rites, KL image by Bilal Bahadur

While two civilians were killed on Saturday in the firing by army personnel on a group of protesters, one of the nine injured died at SKIMS Soura hospital on Wednesday morning.

The army’s written statement came after police decided to investigate the role of several army personnel of the 10th Garhwal battalion, including a major in the incident. The FIR has several sections including “murder and attempts to murder.

“We have received (the) army’s version of the complaint and it has been made part of the file,” Hindustan Times quoted Shopian senior superintendent of police Ambarkar Shriram Dinkar saying.

locals assembling for the funeral procession of Rayees Ahmed, KL image by Bilal Bahadur

“There has been no separate FIR but their version is taken on record,” said Dinkar. He, however, did not divulge the details of the army document.

But an army source said the complaint is along the lines of the statement issued last week.

On January 27, the army released a statement, saying soldiers fired on protesters in “self-defence” to prevent the lynching of an officer, snatching of weapons by villagers and burning of their vehicles, Hindustan Times reported.

Several media outlets have quoted Lt Gen D Anbu, commander, Northern Command, saying “Army had conducted its own probe into the incident and arrived at the conclusion that the soldiers had to resort to firing after they were “provoked to the ultimate”.

sister and a relative of Rayees wailing at his funeral, KL image by Bilal Bahadur

The youth identified as Rayees Ahmad Ganie son of Mohd Yousuf Ganie (19) of Narpora, Shopian was injured in army firing on Saturday in Ganawpora area of district Shopian, succumbed to his injuries at SKIMS Soura on Wednesday morning after battling for life from last five days at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of SKIMS Soura.

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