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NC demands judicial inquiry by sitting judge into Hyderpora shootout

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CPI(M) urges civil society to seek return of Magray’s body to family

Jammu: Pitching for a judicial probe by a sitting judge in the Hyderpora shootout, National Conference president Dr Farooq Abdullah Monday said that they were not satisfied with the magisterial probe ordered into the incident.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a function at Jammu, Abdullah said that in the wake of recent rollback of farm laws, he was hopeful that Prime Minister Narendera Modi will listen to the “heart-beat of the people of J&K and order for the restoration of statehood and (Article 370).”

“I am sure if PM Modi really wants to remove ‘Dil ki doori’ and ‘Dilli ki doori’, he will restore the statehood to J&K and also the autonomy that has been eroded by rolling back Article 370 and Article 35-A,” news agency KNO quoted Abdullah as saying.

Replying to a query on Hyderpora shootout, the NC chief said that he and his party were not satisfied with the magisterial probe ordered by the LG Manoj Sinah into the incident in which four persons including a building owner and a businessman were killed on last Monday.

“A magistrate is a government man and he always comes under government influence and speaks government language. That’s why we demand judicial inquiry,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Jammu and Kashmir unit of CPI(M) on Monday asked the civil society of Ramban and adjoining areas to come forward and demand the return of the body of Amir Magray — the third person killed in the Hyderpora encounter last week — and whose kin claim he was innocent.

The Left party has been pressing for a judicial probe into the controversial shootout in Srinagar and return of the body of Magray, a resident of Gool area of Ramban, who was among four persons killed in the incident on November 15.

According to police, Magray was a militant and got killed along with his Pakistani associate and two others. However, Magray’s father Latief, who claims having killed a militant in his village over 15 years ago had refuted the police claim and appealed to the Lieutenant Governor to provide “justice to his family” and also return his body for proper burial.

“The civil society in Ramban and other areas must come forward and demand the return of the body of innocent Magray, who was in Srinagar to earn livelihood for his family,” Jammu Regional Secretary CPI(M) Sham Prasad Kesar said in a statement here.

“Killing innocent civilians and then even denying their bodies to their families is a huge injustice and against the basic values of humanity. Why are authorities afraid of even dead civilians?” he said.

Urging the authorities to return the body of Magray to his family without any further delay, Kesar said a judicial probe should be ordered into the killing of three civilians.

“As it has been proven beyond any doubt that Magray was a civilian, it is a huge injustice to his family that they are not even allowed to perform his last rites. When the bodies of two other civilians killed in Hyderpora were returned, why is the government reluctant to return Magray’s body to his family?” the CPI(M) leader asked.

He said the government must ensure that those involved in the killing of unarmed civilians are brought to book and punished under the law.

“The probe ordered by the government by an Additional District Magistrate-rank officer in Hyderpora killings is not enough as it is difficult for a middle-rung officer to prove something which is contrary to the government claims,” he said.

The CPI(M) leader said, “We demand a judicial and time-bound probe into the gruesome incident which has shaken the whole Jammu and Kashmir.

“The least the government could do to restore the confidence of people in institutions is to punish the culprits of this heinous crime in a transparent and time-bound manner so that it can serve as deterrence to others in future,” he said.

The bodies of Mohammad Altaf Bhat and Mudasir Gul, two civilians killed in the Hyderpora encounter, were handed over to their kin on Thursday night after they were exhumed following protests by family members that they were innocent and not linked to militancy as claimed by police.

Police had initially buried them in the Handwara area of north Kashmir’s Kupwara district.

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