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Political parties demand time-bound probe, punishment to guilty

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Srinagar, Mar 19: Cutting across party lines, the teacher's death in police custody was condemned by several politicians who demanded a time-bound probe into the matter and punishment to the guilty.

"I had hoped custodial deaths were a thing of our dark past. This is an unacceptable development & must be investigated in a transparent, time bound manner. Exemplary punishment must be handed out to the killers of this young man," Abdullah tweeted.

He also hit out at the previous PDP-BJP coalition government in the State and the Centre for the present situation.

"Midnight raids, crackdowns, rampant arrests, custodial murders, denial of democratic right to choose a government. Kashmir continues to suffer the fallout of the disastrous PDP-BJP alliance and from the Modi government's muscular approach to J&K," the NC leader said.

PDP president Mehbooba Mufti also hit out at the Centre saying its "repressive approach" has left young educated men vulnerable.

"Innocent men hauled up from their homes for interrogation return home only in coffins now. GoI's repressive approach leaves young educated men vulnerable who are forced to take up arms. Stop using Kashmir to exhibit your sick chauvinistic nationalism. We have suffered enough," she said.

People's Conference chairman Sajad Gani Lone also condemned the custodial death.

"Condemn in strongest terms the death in police custody in Srinagar. This is what the sanctity of human life has been reduced to in Kashmir. My thoughts are with the family of the deceased," he said.

Hurriyat-M chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said the custodial killing of the school teacher has once again exposed the “helplessness” of the people of Kashmir.

“Distraught at the brutal custodial killing of young Rizwan Ahmed of Awantipora. The brutal killing once again exposes the, helplessness, vulnerability and insecurity of the lives of Kashmiri’s as impunity to the authorities keeps rising. (sic),” Mirwaiz wrote on Twitter.

CPI(M) leader M Y Tarigami, former PDP leader Altaf Bukhari and ex-IAS officer Shah Faesal have also condemned the custodial death of the teacher.

PDP leader Naeem Akhtar asked Governor Satya Pal Malik's administration to come clean on the incident.

"Disturbing reports of custodial death of youth from Awantipora in Srinagar's Cargo Camp. As per media he was picked up by NIA few days ago & was lodged in CARGO camp of (SOG). @jandkgovernor administration should come clean on this," Akhtar, a former minister, tweeted.

“It is highly unfortunate that a young man, teacher by profession, has lost his life in police custody and it needs to be thoroughly investigated to know what went wrong and who are responsible for his death in custody,” former finance minister Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari said in a statement.

He said at a time when the police had to learn to behave responsibly and sensitively such sad incidents only add to the prevailing mistrust among the people with the system which nobody in a civilized society can afford.

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