Syed Rizwan Geelani, Rising Kashmir
Srinagar, April 10: Mohammad Ameen Zargar appears to be older than actually he is. His face is sun beaten and he looks a tired man. Zargar is tirelessly fighting for the justice of his son, Showkat Ahmad, who was allegedly killed in a staged encounter by Border Security Force (BSF) in 2002 in Rainawari.
The family members claim that the paramilitary BSF troopers killed him since he was a namesake of an active militant in old city in 2002.
“From 2002 onwards, we are fighting for justice. We want the killers to be hanged in public,” the angry father said. “My son was a civilian. He was murdered by BSF for being a namesake of a militant in the area”.
Zargar wandered from pillar to post, knocking every door, which he felt would support him to bring the “culprits” to justice. But nobody helped him.
The father of the deceased said soon after his son’s killing approached State Human Rights Commission and filed a complaint there. He said the SHRC directed the Government to punish the accused troopers.Zargar said far from being the instructions implemented, they have remained confined to papers.
“The killers of my son are roaming scot free,” he fumed.
Later, Zargar said the case was forwarded to premier investigating agency- Central Bureau of Investigation- but no probe was done till date “Our case is pending with CBI from past eight years. It seems that they are least bothered to pay any heed to my case,” he alleged.Showkat Ahmad according to his family members was picked up by the BSF 49th Battalion from his house on April 9 in 2002 and was subsequently killed.
Lending credence to his claims, Zargar said the BSF commandant of a local camp, whose men were involved in the killing of his son, later realized that they have killed a wrong man. “As a result, he gave me a special Identity card so that I was spared from the wrath of troops those days,” he said.
Recollecting past, Zargar said he remembers that night when troopers barged into their house and bundled him into a vehicle and whisked him away. “The same night he was murdered by BSF men,” Zargar recalls.Deceased sister, Azra Ameen said their mother had been bed ridden since the day Showket was killed.
“Why did they kill him? What was his fault? Mother always asks,” said Ameen and broke down.
She too reminisced that fateful day. Amen said the Showket was having dinner when troopers barged into their house and dragged him out.
“They locked all the doors. They also snapped the electricity leaving us in dark. We were shouting, crying for help,” he said.
She said that few hours later they heard the gun shots. “Our heart sank. My mother yelled a loud scream. She knew troopers have killed him in the fake encounter. We can’t forget that harrowing night,” Ameen said.
Next day, she said, the body of Showkat was handed over to them. “After his killing BSF claimed that they have killed an active militant in the area. The news appeared in a newspapers and it was run on TV also,” she said.
She said her brother was working as daily wager in Deputy Commissioner’s office at Srinagar. “They killed him for the sake of promotion and medals,” she said, adding, “We are waiting for the day when killers would be punished.”