Kashmir Indepth

Hyderpora Encounter: Militant used building owner as Human shield, says Police

Srinagar, Dec 28 ( KINS):  A local youth, who was among the three civilians also killed in the encounter with a foreign militant in Srinagar’s Hyderpora area on November 15, was found to be staying with the militant and in their ranks himself, the Jammu and Kashmir Police said on Tuesday.

Addressing a media conference at the police control room (PCR) here, DIG, Central Kashmir, Sujit Kumar, gave a detailed presentation about the investigations carried out into the Hydeprora encounter and said that the CCTV footage and other evidences show that building owner, Altaf Bhat was used as a human shield by foreign militant, Bilal Bhai, who was living in Dr Mudasir Gul’s chamber along with the youth, Amir Magray.

The DIG, who was heading the SIT into the Hyderpora encounter, said that CCTV footage shows that Dr Gul was travelling with the foreign militant in his vehicle in Srinagar.

“The footage and other evidence show that Magray had accompanied the foreign militant during Jamalata Srinagar attack. Magray would often travel to Bandipora and Gurez, an angle which is still under investigation,” he said.

He said prima facie evidence shows that Dr Gul was shot dead by the foreign militant on the directions possibly from across.

“The investigations reveal that the building owner, Altaf Bhat was made human shield by foreign militant and that he was killed in the crossfire,” the DIG said.

Director General of Police, J&K, Dilbag Singh and IGP, Kashmir, Vijay Kumar were also present during the media conference.

The DIG said that Magray was a militant while there were some questions about Bhat too.

“Family of the building owner has not given any satisfactory reply as to who was living on rent, what was their rent payment system, rent deed etc. There are no satisfactory details from Bhat’s family,” he said.

The police media conference was held on a day when officials said that the magisterial enquiry into the Hyderpora encounter had been completed by the Additional District Development Commissioner, Srinagar and that the District Magistrate has passed on the report to the District Judicial Magistrate.

The contents of the magisterial enquiry have not been made public yet.Former J&K chief minister and Lok Sabha MP Farooq Abdullah had last month written to President Ram Nath Kovind seeking a judicial probe into the operation.

Abdullah, who also heads the People’s alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), urged the President to order a time-bound judicial probe into the incident in which four persons, including a foreign militant, his local associate and two others were killed.

“The tragic incident that took place at Hyderpora area of Srinagar on Monday evening has evoked enormous public anger. In this unfortunate incident three civilians got killed in suspicious circumstances. The incident calls for a time-bound judicial probe so that true facts are unraveled and brought in the public domain. Needless to state that such unfortunate incidents widen the gulf between the people of Jammu and Kashmir and the Government of India and, therefore, are to be avoided at any cost,” Abdullah said in his letter on November 19.( KINS)

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