Won’t hand over bodies of 3 youths killed in Srinagar encounter: IGP Kumar

Police nearing ‘conclusive evidence’ to prove that 3 youths killed in ‘encounter’ in Srinagar on Dec. 30 are militants, he says

Jammu and Kashmir Inspector General of Police (IGP) Vijay Kumar on Monday said the police were nearing a “conclusive evidence” to prove that the three youths killed in a disputed encounter in Srinagar on December 30 last year were militants, and reiterated that “the bodies will not be handed over to the families”.

“The data collected so far showed that all the three associates killed in the encounter were involved in providing logistics. Their involvement has been proved almost by 60%. We will place everything before their parents to convince them about the involvement of their children,” Mr. Kumar said at a function organised as a part of the traffic awareness week.

The slain youths, who were killed in a night-long encounter, were identified as Ajaz Maqbool Ganie, Ather Mushtaq from Pulwama and Zubair Lone from Shopian.

Their families disputed the version of the security forces and claimed that their kin were not militants and killed in a staged encounter. They have appealed to the Lieutenant Governor’s administration to return the bodies for a burial at their ancestral graveyards.

“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a protocol is followed. If we return the body of any militant or associate, people will turn up in thousands. The burial was carried out in the presence of families, including their parents. There is no logic of returning the bodies as burial does not take place twice,” the IGP said.

‘Sources get paid’

On the Shopian “staged encounter” last year, the IGP said “money was paid to the source in every encounter but not to officials”.

“Sources are given money [for tipping off on militants’ presence] and not to the officer whether from police, military or paramilitary,” he stated.

Mr. Kumar confirmed that the sources, who apparently worked with the Army captain, were paid money “as promised”. “The source has himself recorded before the magistrate under 164 of the IPC that money has been given,” he added.

Three youths from Rajouri were killed in an ‘encounter’ in Shopian’s Amshipora on July 18, 2020 .

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