Three, including Army captain, chargesheeted in Shopian ‘fake encounter’ in July

The J&K Police’s Special Investigation Team (SIT) on Saturday filed a chargesheet against an Army officer and two others before a local court in the alleged staged encounter in Kashmir that left three “locals” dead in Shopian’s Amshipora on July 18 this year.

A Superintendent of Police (SP)-headed SIT presented a 300-page challan before a local judge and named three persons, including Army Captain Bhupinder of Indian Army’s 62 Rashtriya Rifles; Tabish Ahmad, a resident of Shopian; and Bilal Ahmad, a resident of Pulwama.

The trio has allegedly played a role that led to the encounter. Three missing youths from the Pir Panjal valley’s Rajouri — Abrar Ahmed (25), Imtiyaz Ahmed (20) and Mohammed Ibrar (16) — were left dead in the encounter. The police had said weapons were recovered from the deceased civilians, passed as “unidentified militants” then.

Later, DNA samples established their identities and the bodies were returned to the families of the youths, who were working as labourers in south Kashmir.

Meanwhile, the Army has said the process of summary of evidence was completed with regard to the Shopian “fake encounter”. “The same is being examined by the concerned authorities in consultation with legal advisors for proceeding further. The Army is committed to the ethical conduct of operations,” an Army spokesperson said in a statement on Thursday.

In September this year, the Army admitted that during the operation, the powers vested under the Armed Forces (Jammu and Kashmir) Special Powers Act, 1990 were exceeded and the dos and don’ts of Chief of Army Staff, as approved by the Supreme Court, were contravened.

The spokesperson said the inquiry had brought out “certain prima facie evidence”. “Consequently, the competent disciplinary authority has directed to initiate disciplinary proceedings under the Army Act against those found prima facie answerable,” the spokesperson had said.

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