In the past about 25 years of turmoil in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, it has been trend of the security forces to label the unidentified dead bodies as foreign militants. Not only this, even such dead bodies were graded as well by labeling them as divisional commander, district commander, area commander of dreaded militant out fit Lashker-e-Toiba. The story doesn’t stop here, even some of the dead bodies were given suitable names, like Saifullah, Abdullah,Kandhari , Qadir Bhai, Saidullah Multaani , etc , what ever suited to the face of dead body. And the chapter of investigation was always closed with out any botheration and exercise. Hundreds of such graves across the state are in question today and the matter of investigation is laying with State Human Rights Commission (SHRC). The irony is that in some cases, where the police failed to investigate the killing or murder of any person or wanted to hush up the case, they simply passed the buck, and such unidentified dead bodies were held responsible for the murders and killings in those cases where police failed to make any brake through or wanted to hush up the cases .
In a similar fashion, in a latest case, on 7th September 2013, CRPF alleged killed four youth in Shopian district of south Kashmir. Eye witnesses say all the four youth were fired upon by the CRPF when they were passing from the CRPF camp on their bikes . On the day of incident, CRPF had claimed that three militants were killed in the encounter in Shopian while police had said two anti national elements were killed in the incident. Later when three dead bodies of the slain youth were identified and claimed by the local people and their relatives, the police kept mum for two days . Out of the four dead bodies, three have been identified as
Tawseef Ahmad Bhat of Baba Mohalla Shopian, Muhammad Yousuf Sofi of Durpora, Zainapora, Shopian and Tariq Ahmad Mir of Wukai, Kulgam. While the fourth dead body is yet to be identified .Although, police reverted from its earlier theory of antinational elements and declared three slain youth as innocent boys of shopian and said that they were not involved in any anti national activity, but it isn’t still sure about the fourth one .Simply, the police says that fourth one may be Lashker militant with out mentioning his previous record . In fact, the police was forced to accept this reality only after the intervention of JKPCC Chief Prof. Saif u Din Soz who had strongly condemned the incident and had asked the police to share the factual details with the public . However, again as per routine, the fourth unidentified dead body has been declared as Lashker militant and the dead body has always been given a name called Abdullah Haroon. As per details,Touseef who was running a grocery shop in Shopian locality was hit by several bullets fired by CRPF men at Gagran when he was on way to drop his friend Adil at examination center at Shopian Degree College. Touseef succumbed to his injuries at a hospital.
Yousuf of Zainapora, who was married for two months, had according to his family members, gone to Shopian in connection with business, when he was hit by bullets fired by CRPF.
The third civilian Tariq, a small time walnut businessman, from Kulgam district had gone to Shopian to collect a consignment of walnuts from a dealer, according to his uncle, Ghulam Nabi.
The police statement said the fourth “non-local looking person” killed in the firing incident, was neither claimed nor identified by any local.
“However, the evidence collected from the spot and subsequent verifications suggest that he is Abdullah Haroon of LeT (Lashkar-e-Toiba militant organization),” the statement said. “One pistol, two grenades and a diary were recovered from the spot besides the mobile phone recovered from his pocket contains a video clip showing weapons snatched from police and CRPF personnel in the incidents of Arwani and Awnera Shopian. Further the mobile phone has Dialer/Skype software which is available with Lashkar commanders.”
However, a local news gathering agency CNS quoting eyewitness Maroofa Banoo said: “The deceased was a non-local Bihari mason.”
Sources said the police handed the dead body of the fourth person to the locals at Keharward village Sunday evening, who buried him after proper funeral.
The question arises if Abdullah Haroon was such an important terrorist and wanted in the police list then why he was not identified at the same movement when he was killed. Moreover, the militant belonging to the dreaded out fit Lashker was carrying a simple pistol and two grenades. Is lashker running short of arms now days ?
In fact there are many reasons to label such unidentified dead bodies as foreign militants . First of all there will be no claimant of any such dead body and you can give him any name or label . Number two, if you have pending unresolved killing cases you can held these dead bodies responsible for such killings and you can close the case easily and get rid of the investigation. Number three , you can justify the encounter with militants when you have any such unclaimed dead body to label him as militant.
(The author is a journalist and can be reached at email@example.com or 09419170570 )