Cash For Kill Scheme Comes Under Scanner After Machil Fake Encounter Verdict

13 November 2014

Srinagar: Clamour is growing for revisiting the cash-for-kill incentive for the security forces fighting militancy in Jammu and Kashmir in a bid to prevent the Machil like fake encounters in future. Under the cash-for-kill policy, security forces men get reward money for eliminating the militants in the encounter. For instance, the cash reward for killing top militant could be more than Rs three lakh. Plus there are different price tags on top commanders of militants in Kashmir. Some hardcore Pakistani militant commanders carry Rs10 lakh award on their heads. The booty is shared by the men and informers who are instrumental in the operation. On April 29, 2010, two counter-insurgents along with Territorial Army rifleman Abbas Hussain lured three youth - Shezad Ahmad, Riyaz Ahmad and Mohammad Shafi - from Nadihal village of Bandipora district to Kalaroos in Kupwara district, promising them job and money. Sources said the civilian accused had allegedly got the money for luring three civilians who were later killed on the Line of Control (LoC) in Machil sector of Kupwara district on April 30, 2010. 'There are two types of incentives: monetary rewards and out of turn promotion. One of the police officers rose to the rank of SSP from assistant sub inspector in 20 years. He got out of turn promotion twice. If they (forces) were in a position to arrest anyone they were preferring killing because it was fetching them promotions and rewards,' said Khurram Parvez, programme coordinator, J&K Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS). Khurram noted that the monetary rewards are over and above to the salary and perks of the men involved in the encounters. 'The governments are involved in institutionalising the incentivisation of encounters. When this policy was invoked the encounters increased. It did not eradicate only militancy but many common people were killed also. Bodies were counted because they had a price tag', said Khurram. Ruling National Conference (NC) too want the cash for kill policy to be revisited in a bid to stop the business of fake encounter in Jammu and Kashmir. 'If there is evidence to suggest that this incentive in some shape or form results in cases like Machil then obviously it should be revisited. You can have isolated remedial measure and systemic remedial measure. We have reiterated time and again that there should be systemic remedial measure like revocation of AFSPA,' said Junaid Mattu, NC spokesman.