Shopian Civilian Deaths: Army Personnel To Get Protection Under AFSPA

Protesters throw stones on security forces amid tear smoke during a protest against the alleged killing of two youth in Army firing in Shopian district of South Kashmir in Srinagar

Shopian Civilian Deaths: Army Personnel To Get Protection Under AFSPA

However, CM Mehbooba Mufti, of the PDP, asserted that FIR filed against the Army would be taken to its "logical conclusion"+".

"The police asked the Army to not pass through the village as one of the militants killed in a recent encounter was its resident".

"There is a consensus on the magisterial probe and criminal action should be taken against the guilty".

What's worse, as per a written submission by the Union Minister of Defence to the Rajya Sabha on 1 January 2018, out of 50 requests for sanction for prosecution of its personnel, in 47 cases sanction was denied, and in three cases, the matter is pending.

Mufti called on Union defense minister Nirmala Sitharaman and expressed her displeasure over the incident.

Northern Command chief Lt-General Devraj Anbu said, "We have done our internal inquiry". What ought to be kept in mind is that these 50 are just a tip of the iceberg, where investigations by police resulted in filing of charge-sheet and sanction for prosecution is awaited. Police should have filed "a generic FIR", which does not take names in such cases, he added. A Major, who led the Army personnel at the time of the incident on Saturday, was also mentioned in the FIR, officials said on Sunday.

Even as the Army filed a counter-complaint against stone-pelters in the Shopian case, top government sources said the accused men would be provided protection under the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), under which the military has been deployed in the terrorist-infested state.

Police, meanwhile, has incorporated army statement on civilian killings in FIR registered against army for killing the youth. Invoking former Prime Minister A B Vajpayee's "Insaniyat, Kashmiriyat and jamhooriyat" comment, he said it was like a commandment for the party.

The circumstances that were created by the stone pelters in Shopian, subjecting Army convoy to heavy pelting, hurting a JCO and others and damaging vehicles, left no other option for the personnel but to resort to firing in self defence, the BJP leader said.

"Within no time, the numbers increased to 250 people". "He was with the 16 other vehicles that were separated from the four vehicles surrounded by the over 200 stone-throwing protesters", an officer said. When a senior jawan sustained head injuries and fell unconscious, the soldiers opened fire at the aggressive mob. The mob tried to lynch him and snatch his weapon, it said.

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