Hurriyat (M) chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Tuesday lambasted Jammu and Kashmir government over its stand on First Information Report (FIR) against army major in Shopian killings last month.
“Preposterous! Now, J&K Govt in Supreme Court says no accused named in the police FIR registered in the brutal killing of 3 civilians in Shopian, while all along they were beating the drum that the accused has been identified and named and “justice” will be delivered!” Mirwaiz wrote on his tweeter handle.
Preposterous! Now, J&K Govt in Supreme Court says no accused named in the police FIR registered in the brutal killing of 3 civilians in Shopian, while all along they were beating the drum that the accused has been identified and named and “justice” will be delivered!
— Mirwaiz Umar Farooq (@MirwaizKashmir) March 5, 2018
On Monday, Senior advocate Shekhar Naphade, appearing for Jammu and Kashmir government, told the Supreme Court that Major Aditya does not even figure among the names of the accused in the FIR lodged on the allegation that army personnel opened fire in which three persons were killed.
Later, the apex court halted further investigation in the January 27 Shopian firing incident involving an army officer in which four civilians were killed, even as the Centre and Jammu and Kashmir government were at loggerheads over lodging of the FIR.
The Jammu and Kashmir government on Monday had told the Indian Supreme Court that Major Aditiya has not been named in the FIR registered against the Army in the Shopian civilian murder case.
The supreme court was informed when it was listening to the plea of Lt Col (retd) Karamveer Singh, father of Major Aditiya. The J&K government submitted in a status report to the court that the Army officer had not been named when the police lodged an FIR to investigate the firing incident, rendering the cause for Singh’s petition moot.
A three-judge bench stayed the investigation into the Shopian firing, and by extension Major Aditya’s role or lack thereof in it, till the next date of hearing on April 24.
“Major Aditya is an army officer and cannot be treated like ordinary criminals by the J&K police,” the SC said.
Though J&K government told SC that the FIR does not name Major Aditya as an accused, the bench said because his name is mentioned in the narrative of the FIR, he could be roped in at any time.
Last month, the top court had said that the Mehbooba Mufti-coalition in JK cannot take “coercive steps” against Army officers, including Major Aditya Kumar, accused in the case.
In its report, the Mufti government complained that the Army does not respond to its letters and asked “Are they above the law?” and “Whether Army has a license to kill?”.
The bench, comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, had asked Lt Col Singh’s counsel to share the copies of his petition with the office of attorney general K K Venugopal and the J&K government.
Last month three civilian were murdered by the Army after a crowd threw stones at them. They had come to remove ‘black banners’ which the people didn’t allow.
The army according to eyewitnesses retaliated with firing. Witnesses added that army fired upon youth directly resulting in the injuries of at least 11 persons.
The Army however said that they fired in ‘self defence’ after they were provoked to the ‘ultimate’ by a stone throwing crowd.
The BJP, coalition partner of the ruling PDP had demanded that the FIR against the Army should withdrawn and a new one lodged without naming anyone. However, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said that the investigation would be taken to its ‘logical end.’
A BJP leader Subramanian Swamy threatened Mehbooba Mufti to withdraw the FIR against the army otherwise her government would be toppled.
“What’s this nonsense? Dismiss that government. Tell Mehbooba (Mufti) to withdraw the FIR else her government would be toppled,” Swamy told ANI.