Citing the autopsy report of the 25-year-old man from Tral, whose death triggered protests in the valley, police have said that Khalid Muzaffar Wani died of a bullet injury during a gunbattle between the Army and militants in a forest, and not due to torture as his family has claimed.
The police, however, did not say when and where the autopsy was conducted. Even health officials had no knowledge about the autopsy on the slain youth.
“Yes, the post mortem report has come,” DIG (South Kashmir) Nitish Kumar said. “It says that the death was due to a firearm injury.” Neither the DIG nor the IGP (Kashmir) named the hospital where the autopsy was carried out.
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“I have heard that it (autopsy report) has come but I am yet to see it,” IGP (Kashmir) Javed Mujtaba Gilani said. When asked where the autopsy was conducted, he said it “must have been conducted at Tral (hospital)”.
Khalid’s father has been maintaining that the post-mortem examination of his son was not conducted, and that he was “tortured to death”.
A day after Khalid died in an alleged encounter with militants on April 13, IGP Gilani had said the post-mortem on the youth’s body was conducted and the report would take some days.
However, health officials said they have not carried out any post-mortem on Khalid’s body. “No, we didn’t conduct his autopsy here,” Dr Shakeel Ahmad, Block Medical Officer (Tral), told The Indian Express.
A doctor at Primary Health Centre, Awantipora, too denied carrying out the autopsy there. “We don’t conduct any post-mortem examination here,” said Dr Maqbool Ahmad.
Block Medical Officer, Pampore, Dr Bilquees too denied having conducted autopsy on Khalid’s body, so did Dr Fayaz Ahmad, Chief Medical Officer, Pulwama. “If his post-mortem has been conducted, it must have been at Tral hospital,” the CMO said. “I have not received any post-mortem report copy in this regard.”
“He was tortured to death. There was no bullet injury on his body. His nose was broken, his forehead and skull too was broken,” said Khalid’s father Muzaffar Ahmad Wani. “Why didn’t they conduct his post mortem?”
A friend of Khalid said there were no autopsy marks on his body. “Usually in case of post mortem, there is a cut on the abdomen of the body,” said Anayat Ahmad. “There was no cut on Khalid’s body.”
On April 13, the Army killed Khalid in the Kamla forests of Tral, where he had gone along with three friends allegedly to meet his militant brother Burhan. Khalid’s younger brother is a Hizbul Mujahideen commander, operating from Tral.