Kashmiri Sikhs demand re-investigation into Chattisinghpora massacre

Posted: March 20, 2017 in Uncategorized

Authorities initially blamed the gory incident, in which 35 men were killed, on separatist militants only to be contradicted by CBI.
Following the directions of the Supreme Court, Army took up the Pathribal 'fake' encounter case from the civil court in 2012, but later closed the in January 2014 asserting that ‘the evidence recorded couldn't establish a prime-facie case against any of the accused’. (Representationa photo: AP)

 Following the directions of the Supreme Court, Army took up the Pathribal ‘fake’ encounter case from the civil court in 2012, but later closed the in January 2014 asserting that ‘the evidence recorded couldn’t establish a prime-facie case against any of the accused’. (Representationa photo: AP)

Srinagar: An amalgam of Kashmiri Sikhs on Saturday demanded a re-investigation into the March 2000 massacre of 35 members of the minority community in the village of Chattisinghpora outside the southern town of Anantnag. A local woman had also died of cardiac arrest on seeing piles of bullet-riddled corpses of the victims, raising the toll to 36.

The authorities had blamed the gory incident on separatist militants, whom the Army and J&K police later claimed to have killed in an encounter five days later in Anantnag’s Pathribal area.

But the CBI, in its 2006 charge sheet, said that all five slain ‘foreign militants’ were unarmed civilians picked up from different areas of the district, and described the encounter as ‘fake’.

Following the directions of the Supreme Court, Army took up the Pathribal ‘fake’ encounter case from the civil court in 2012, but later closed the in January 2014 asserting that ‘the evidence recorded couldn’t establish a prime-facie case against any of the accused’.

“Even after the lapse of 16 years the people of Jammu and Kashmir particularly the Sikhs of the Valley are still waiting for the justice to be delivered. We urge the State and Central governments to identify the real perpetrators, arrest them and then bring them to justice,” said Jagmohan Singh Raina, chairman of All Parties Sikh Coordination Committee (APSCC) in a signed statement here.

He said, “Truth must come out as to who killed innocent Sikh villagers. That is very important in order to rebuild people’s trust and faith in inquiries ordered by governments from time to time”.

He also reiterated that the families of those slain should be compensated.

“In spite of their loved ones falling prey to violence in such gory fashion the families of these Sikhs not only chose to stay back in the Valley but also worked towards strengthening the feeling of communal harmony,” Raina said.

The APSCC leader said that many questions regarding the encounter remain unanswered.

“Police had claimed that nearly 20 militants carried out the massacre at Chattisinghpora and later said five of them were killed which was proved wrong. The question being asked by many in Kashmir even today is whether the security officials really knew who killed the innocent Sikhs of Chattisinghpora,” he said, demanding a fresh probe into the killings.

Though the then Chief Minister, Farooq Abdullah, had promised that the killers would not be spared, justice continues to be denied to the victims’ families, Raina said.http://www.deccanchronicle.com/nation/current-affairs/190316/kashmiri-sikhs-demand-re-investigation-into-massacre-of-35-men-at-chattisinghpora.html

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