‘Killings, CASOs, encounters turn 2018 bloodiest year in a decade’

Published at January 01, 2019 01:15 AM 0Comment(s)1083views

Forces killed 71 civilians, reveals JKCCS report
11 political activists killed
3 civilians were disappeared
108 instances of internet blockade
275 CASOs, 143 encounters reported this year
120 houses damaged

‘Killings, CASOs, encounters turn 2018 bloodiest year in a decade’
Riyaz Bhat
Jammu Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS) in its annual report on Monday revealed that 2018 was the “bloodiest year” in more than a decade as this year witnessed over 550 killings in the restive Kashmir region.
Jammu Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS) and Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) in its annual report, released today said that at least 71 civilians were killed by forces out of total 160 civilians in the year 2018.
“Out of the 160 civilians killed, 71 were killed by armed forces, 29 died in cross LoC shelling, 25 were killed by unidentified gunmen, 18 were killed by militants, 10 were killed in explosions, one died in stone pelting, one was killed by a security guard, and one person (a minor girl) was raped and killed by Special Police Officers of Jammu and Kashmir police,” report said.
JKCCS and APDP in a report also states that the highest number of civilian killings was recorded in Pulwama district with 28 civilian killings, followed by Kulgam district with 26 civilian killings.
“District Shopian witnessed 24 civilian killings. The four districts of South Kashmir – Kulgam, Anantnag, Pulwama and Shopian jointly recorded the highest number of civilian killings with 85, while North Kashmir districts of Baramulla, Kupwara and Bandipora recorded 24 civilian killings and the Central Kashmir districts of Srinagar, Ganderbal and Budgam recorded 13 civilian killings. Jammu recorded 22 civilian killings as a result of cross LoC shelling. The least number of killings was recorded in Kathua and Rajouri districts with one civilian killing in each district,” said the report.
Stating about the women killings in the state, JKCCS said, “At least 18 women were killed in 2018 in different incidents of violence. Majority of women (8) fell victim to the cross LOC shelling, while 6 were killed in armed forces action and three died in cross firing and one was killed by a suspected militant.”
The report released further states that in 2018, at least 275 Cordon and Search Operations (CASOs) were conducted across the state which resulted in the killing of 267 militants.
According to the data released states that at least 143 encounters took place between government forces and the militants following CASOs.
“At least 120 cases of damage to civilian houses were reported in the state in which 31 houses were completely burnt while as 94 were partially damaged till December end,” the annual report reads.
It further claimed that three civilians were forcibly disappeared and their dead bodies later surfaced.
“The state government in J&K continues to exercise restraint on the freedom of religion and belief and frequently resorts to curbs. For 12 Fridays out of 52, prayers were disallowed in the Jamia Masjid and Muharram processions were also disallowed,” it reads.
In the year, APDP and JKCCS documented 108 instances of internet blockade in Jammu and Kashmir.
In the state, the horrifying rape and murder of an eight-year girl from Kathua in January 2018 demonstrates.
“In 2018, there were other cases where allegations of rape were made against CRPF personnel in Poonch and in another case army personnel was arrested by police for allegedly abducting a girl in Poonch,” JKCCS said in a report.
This year in February, JKCCS submitted a petition to SHRC listing 143 cases of sexual violence cases in Kashmir and demanded investigation but till now no progress has happened in the case.
“In 2018, the instances of persecution and harassment of Kashmiris living outside was frequently reported,” reads a report.
According to the data compiled by APDP and JKCCS, at least 22 incidents of harassment and persecution of Kashmiris living outside were reported this year in which 24 Kashmiri students were assaulted and 19 were arrested.
“This year at least 11 political activists were killed in acts of targeted violence in Jammu and Kashmir. This year also witnessed multiple attacks on the family members of policemen, political activists and militants,” the annual report reads.