Shopian shuts on 9th death anniversary of Asiya, Neelofar

Shopian shuts on 9th death anniversary of Asiya, Neelofar

My fight for justice will end with my death only: Shakeel

ESS AHMAD

ANANTNAG, May 29: The alleged rape and murder of two young women of Shopian, Asiya and Neelofar might be a closed chapter for the central and state governments but for the family of victims, the wounds of brutality on their loved ones are still as fresh on their minds as they were on day one.

On this day in 2009, the two women from Ahangar family had gone to their orchard for work. However, the duo did not return in the evening. The family and locals registered a missing report with police and searched for them during the entire night but found their bruised bodies next morning from Rambiara nalla at a little distance from the forces camp and district police lines.

The double alleged rape and murder triggered an outrage across the valley for around two weeks where as the Shopian observed shutdown for record 47 days amid protests. Following the public protests government initially formed a Special Investigation Team (SIT) of policy and an independent commission to probe the case. The case was later handed over to CBI which in its report ruled out the rape and concluded that the deaths had been caused due to drowning in a nalla.

The family and the locals rejected the CBI report. The then chief minister Omar Abdullah had also described the deaths as drowning case.

On the ninth anniversary of the horrific incident, family members pledged to keep their fight for justice going.

“Since the brutal rape and murder of my sister and wife I have lost peace of mind. So how do you expect me or my other family members to forget the brutality the killers had done on them,” Shakeel Ahmad Ahangar, husband of Neelofar and brother of Asiya told Kashmir Times over phone.

The family on Tuesday had organised a sit-in at Pratap Park Srinagar on the ninth anniversary of the incident to seek justice. The protest was also joined by some social activists and students.

Ahangar said that remembering his wife and sister on their anniversaries is aimed to tell those who shielded their rapists and killers that ‘We have not given up’.

“Though I don’t expect justice from Indian judiciary or its rulers as we know judiciary here is working on the political directions. But we will continue to cry for justice as long as we are alive. It will end my death only,” Ahangar said.

He said that the family is going to organise a peaceful protest either at Jamia Masjid or Rambiara on Wednesday to member Asiya and Neelofar.

He also accused the present chief minister Mehbooba Mufti of using the rape and murder of his sister and daughter for her political gains.

“After the incident Mehbooba’s only election slogan in Shopian was ‘justice for Asiya and Neelofar’. But after coming to power she did not utter a single word for them,” Ahangar said.

“I clearly say Omar Abdullah is the murderer of my wife and sister but if he is the murderer Mehbooba who used the tragedy for political gains is no better,” Ahangar said.

Meanwhile, Shopian district observed a complete shutdown on Tuesday to mark the ninth anniversary of the two women. All the shops, private offices, other business establishments and educational institutions remained shut to remember the victims. The call for shutdown in the district had been given by Joint Resistance Leadership.

News Updated at : Wednesday, May 30, 2018