SRINAGAR: The J&K High Court has granted a month’s time to the SIT to complete its investigation into the killing of two youths, allegedly due to police firing, in Anantnag district during the 2010 agitation. The direction by a single bench of Justice Mohammad Yaqoob Mir followed a submission by the investigation officer, Aijaz Rasool, that investigations into the case will be completed within a month. “All efforts are being made to ensure a fair and defect-free investigation and filing of chargesheet,” the officer submitted. The two youngsters — Bilal Ahmad Najar and Noor-ul-Amin Dugga — were killed near Ahl-e-Hadees Masjid at Khannabal on September 19, 2010, after the police opened fire on the funeral procession of another youth Maroof Ahmad Nath, whose body had been recovered on the fateful day. Maroof had drowned in the Jhelum on September 13 while being chased by police and CRPF personnel. “One month’s time is granted with the expectation that no further request for an extension of time will be sought,” the court said and directed to post the case on November 9. On the last date of hearing, police had informed the court that out of 101 witnesses — whose list was provided by the victim’s families — statements of 94 have been recorded. Besides, the police had said, some other formalities were also yet to be completed before the investigation could be concluded. Advocate Mina Qayoom, representing the victim’s families who petitioned the court following the death of their kin, submitted that the police was delaying the filing of the chargesheet. He said that witnesses have named a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) among those responsible for the killings. On the last date of hearing in August this year, the court had observed: “The criminal justice system forms the edifice for an orderly society. When a crime is committed, culprits are to be brought to justice. Delay in conducting investigation would, in turn, result in delayed filing of challan, which is bound to adversely affect the administration of criminal justice.” Monitoring the case, the court had also directed the SIT to complete the investigation by October 5. The police had initially refused to register an FIR, contending that a case (FIR No. 355/2010) was already registered with regard to the drowning incident. In November 2012, the court had withdrawn the proceedings of the case from Chief Judicial Magistrate Anantnag for monitoring by the High Court so as to avoid “miscarriage of justice.” In its report, the State Human Rights Commission had stated that the case (FIR No. 355/2010 under section 188, 147, 148, 336, 427, 307 RPC, 3-4 Public Property [Prevention of Damages] Act-1985) was actually registered against the two killed youths.
2015 Kashmir Despatch