When J&K Police arrested Deputy Superintendent of Police Davinder Singh, a decorated counter-insurgency officer who is currently posted with the security and anti-hijacking unit of J&K Police at Srinagar airport, along with two “most wanted” militants in a car in South Kashmir on Saturday, it brought back questions about his alleged role in the 2001 Parliament attack case and other big cases in Jammu and Kashmir.
In 2004, in a letter to his lawyer Sushil Kumar, Afzal Guru, then lodged in Tihar Jail for his involvement in the Parliament attack, had said that “DSP Davinder Singh”, then posted with J&K Police’s Special Operations Group at Humhama, had asked him to “take Mohammad”, a Pakistani national identified as one of those who carried out the Parliament attack, “to Delhi, rent a flat for his stay and purchase a car for him”.
Afzal had also named another police officer, Shanty Singh, who, along with Davinder Singh, reportedly tortured him at Humhama STF camp. He had also mentioned “Altaf Hussain, who is brother-in-law of SSP Ashaq Hussain (Bukhari) of Budgam”, who first “brokered” his release with Davinder Singh, and later took him to the DySP.
Afzal was convicted and hanged on February 9, 2013.
Davinder Singh’s alleged role in the Parliament attack case was not probed. Asked about this on Sunday, IGP (Kashmir) Vijay Kumar said: “There is nothing as such in our records nor do I know anything about it… We will question him on this.”
A senior J&K Police officer said “his (Davinder Singh’s) deeds are finally catching up with him. This time, I don’t think anybody can save him”.
“There will be many questions asked. Where was he taking these two wanted militants? They were leaving the Valley, as they were nabbed on the way to Jammu. What plan did they have,’’ said the officer. “Almost every operation where he (Davinder Singh) or his associates were involved has become suspect”.
The officer said Singh was posted across Kashmir on counter-insurgency duty. “He was DySP DR in Pulwama too,’’ the officer said. “He can open a can of worms once he starts talking”.
Meanwhile, while Shanty Singh’s alleged role in the Afzal Guru case could not be ascertained, he was jailed in 2003, after an investigation by J&K Police’s Crime Branch found him involved in “torturing a civilian Mohammad Ayoub Dar of Sholipora, Pakharpore to death” in “police custody” and then “firing at his body”, dubbing him as a “militant who was killed in an encounter”.
The Crime Branch investigation had been initiated after instructions from the State Human Rights Commission. The Crime Branch had registered a case (FIR 77/2003) to probe Shanty Singh’s role in the custodial killing. According to police records, “during the intervening night of June 1 and 2, 1999, Ishpal Singh alias Shanty Singh along with Inspector Waris Shah picked up Mohammad Ayoub Dar Son of Abdul Rehman Dar from his home at Sholipora in Pakharpora. Dar had died while Shanty Singh was interrogating him. He had then opened fire at his body and planted some arms and ammunition on his body to pass him off as a militant who was killed in an encounter at Dalwan village”.
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