February 2007 News

Seven cops charged in court for 'fake encounter'

28 February 2007
Indo-Asian News Service

Srinagar: The charge sheet against seven policemen, accused of abducting and killing a carpenter in Anantnag district in a 'fake encounter', was submitted in a local court Wednesday.'The challan (charge sheet) was presented in the court of the chief judicial magistrate, Srinagar, for committal to the district and sessions court. The investigations and evidence gathering were done in record time in this case,' said Farooq Ahmad, deputy inspector general of police (Central Kashmir).Abdul Rehman Paddar, a carpenter of Larnoo village, went missing from the Batmaloo locality of Srinagar on Dec 8, 2006. He was reportedly killed Dec 9 in a fake encounter after being framed as a foreign guerrilla in Ganderbal police district by the Special Operations Group (SOG).'The challan has been presented against former senior superintendent of police (Ganderbal) H.R. Parihar, deputy superintendent of police Bahadur Ram, assistant sub-inspector of police Farooq Ahmad Gudoo, selection grade constable Farooq Ahmad Paddar, and constables Manzoor Ahmad, Bansi Lal and Zaheer Abbas.'All these people have been charged with sections 120 B (Criminal Conspiracy) read with sections 302 (murder), section 364 (kidnapping) and section 201(destruction of evidence) of the Penal Code in the murder of carpenter Abdul Rehman Paddar,' Ahmad, who heads the special investigating team (SIT) probing the fake encounters, told IANS here.The exhumed remains from the grave, where Rehman had been buried after the fake encounter framing him as Abu Hafiz of Multan (Pakistan), had been sent to the Central Sciences Forensic Lab (Chandigarh) for DNA matchings with samples taken from his relatives.The DNA report, received last week, proved Rehman's identity as a local and not as the foreign guerrilla the SOG (Ganderbal) had claimed.The slain carpenter's family, including his wife Muneera and father Ghulam Rasool Paddar, was present in court when the prosecution presented the chargesheet against the accused. Muneera told reporters: 'We are satisfied with the investigations of the police whose efforts alone unearthed the murder of my husband. 'I demand the most stringent punishment for the guilty so that families are not orphaned by beastly, greedy men looking for money and medals.'All the accused were produced in the court of M.Y. Akhoon, chief judicial magistrate, Srinagar. Hundreds of people gathered at the court premises because of the huge public interest the 'fake encounter' case has evoked in Kashmir.


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