In the list of 634 stone-pelting accused who were granted amnesty by the J&K government on Eid, there are 70 Hindus booked on similar charges during the 2008 Amarnath Yatra agitation in Jammu.
With the state Home Department giving its nod to the recommendations of a three-member committee headed by DGP K Rajendra, the police will now apply to different courts seeking permission to withdraw cases against them. The parents of these youth and they themselves will have to give an undertaking that they will not indulge in such activity in future, said an official government release.
However, the cases involving those charged with heinous crimes like murder, attempt to murder and arson will not be taken up for review by the committee, which also had Additional DGP S M Sahai and Special Secretary Home as its members.
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Confirming this, Deputy Chief Minister Dr Nirmal Singh added that there were 634 stone-pelters named in 104 FIRs registered at different police stations across the state during 2008 and 2009. These included 20 such cases involving nearly 70 stone-pelters in Jammu region, he said.
Singh, who went through all the Home Department files to ensure that no person booked on stone-pelting charge during the period was left out, said that it had been the long-pending demand of the people of Jammu to withdraw cases against those who took part in Amarnath agitation.
Meanwhile, sources said that granting amnesty was the first step to win over the Valley. A sizeable number among them were booked during the 2010 summer unrest in Kashmir.
Recommending withdrawal of cases in a phased manner, the committee had proposed segregation of cases between 2008-14. To review cases registered during 2010-14, the committee has sought three weeks time.
However, apart from stone-pelting, there are many booked for arson and murder attempt. Sources said that while those booked on charges of attempt to murder will have to stand trial in courts, the cases of those booked for arson will be reviewed at a later stage. “Instead of getting them acquitted from courts for want of evidence, it is better that government takes the credit of releasing them,’’ a senior police officer said.