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Kashmir simmers over fake encounter killings

By Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar
February 05, 2007 08:16 IST
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As samples of victims and their relatives were flown to the Central Forensic Science Laboratory, Chandigarh, for DNA mapping on Sunday afternoon, shock and anger over fake encounter killings continued to simmer in the Valley.

A senior police officer said that DNA mapping would take 35 to 45 days.

The challan against the police officers accused of the disappearance and subsequent murder of five south Kashmir innocent civilians would be presented in court in Srinagar shortly.

The state government has formed a special investigating team headed by Deputy Inspector General of Police, central Kashmir range, Farooq Ahmad to conduct a thorough probe in the matter.

Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad strongly responded to the disclosures of fake encounters and made a commitment that a "police officer of any rank found guilty of human rights violations would not be spared for his acts of commission or omission."

The chief minister re-defined the prime minister's concept of zero tolerance over human rights issues saying, "It means that violators of human rights while fighting militancy would not go unpunished."

This he said while commenting on the arrest of Senior Superintendent of Police Hans Raj Parihar, Deputy Superintendent of Police Bhadur Ram and other police officials involved in fake encounters.

"The countdown of zero tolerance on human rights violations has started," Azad told newsmen in Jammu.

"Those who for their promotions and awards have killed innocent civilians in the name of militancy are murderers and deserve the same treatment as murderers should be given," he added.

Azad, said that his government would "have also chosen to hide the murders committed by few security personnel" but he "chose to take action against them rather than shield their criminal acts."

"Not only have the people of Jammu and Kashmir liked this gesture of the government, but at the national and international level our concern for protection of human rights is appreciated," Azad said.

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Mukhtar Ahmad in Srinagar