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Kashmir: Youth Killed in fake encounter – Defence minister orders probe; Dozens injured as police resorted to use of force against protesters

July 26, 2012 | By

Hilal Ahmad Dar, a resident of Aloosa in Bandipora district, was killed in army firing late on Tuesday (July 24, 2012) night, triggering protests in the area.

Hilal Ahmad Dar, a resident of Aloosa in Bandipora district, was killed in army firing late on Tuesday (July 24, 2012) night, triggering protests in the area.

New Delhi, India (July 26, 2012): As per reports from New Delhi, the Defence Minister of India A.K. Antony today ordered a probe into the incident of a teenager killing in Jammu and Kashmir at the hands of Indian army personnel. Minister has showed concern over local protests instigated by the killing incident and he is reported to have directed the army to initiate strict action if anyone was found guilty.

Earlier the Indian army had refused to hold an inquiry into the incident of youth killing while reiterating that the youth killed by army was a militant.

“The defence minister has ordered an inquiry into the killing of a youth in Bandipore. He has directed the army to take strict action if anybody is found guilty in the case,” defence ministry spokesperson Sitanshu Kar said today in New Delhi.

It is notable that the Bandipore district magistrate has also ordered a magisterial probe into the killing of 19-year-old Hilal Ahmad Dar. Dar belong to Aloosa village of this district and he was shot dead in an alleged staged shoot-out between army personnel and suspected militants Tuesday, the 24th of July, 2012.

As per media reports on Wednesday (25 July, 2012) protests broke out in the area after Dar’s body was handed over to relatives for burial. There are reports that the police resorted to use of force to suppress the protests and about two dozen villagers were injured due to force used by the police in Bandipore town when protesters carrying his body shouted anti-government slogans and pelted stones at the security forces.

“Villagers and the victim’s family said Dar was innocent and was killed after the Ramadan evening “Tarawi” prayers” reports IANS.

“However, an army officer in Srinagar claimed that the security personnel had recovered weapons from the killed youth’s possession” the agency adds.

Srinagar-based 15 Corps General Officer Commanding Lt. Gen. Om Prakash is quoted to have said that “when a group of militants approached the ambush, they were challenged to surrender, upon which they opened fire on the troops. One person was killed in the encounter from whose possession a weapon has also been recovered”.

It is notable that fake/staged encounters are a common phenomena in India against the people belonging to struggling nations of this peninsula. Human rights organizations have alleged that mass that the practice of fake encounters is being applied at large scale in Kashmir region as it was practised in Punjab during 1980s-90s.

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