The Jammu and Kashmir Government has said that more than 21,000 militants were killed in the two-decades of turmoil in the state and over 3,600 civilians died at the hands of law enforcing agencies while maintaining law and order.
Responding to a notice from the State Human Rights Commission (SHRC),the Home Department has said that 21,449 militants were killed in the state since 1990 till May this year.
The SHRC had issued a notice to the state government on an application seeking details of unmarked graves in Poonch and Rajouri districts.
Two Human rights groups Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) and International Peoples Tribunal on Human Rights in Kashmir (IPTK) had demanded details about the unmarked graves in these two districts.
According to the applicants,there were more than 2,000 graves in which unidentified persons were buried. The rights groups suspect that many of those buried in the graves could be persons missing from various parts of the state since eruption of militancy.
Asserting that cognisance has been taken in all cases of custodial disappearance,the Home department said “the apprehension that some of the dead bodies which are unidentified may be of the enforced disappearance is only based on statements of some persons and not (based) on facts.”
On the missing persons,the Home Department maintained that hundreds of these people were living in Pakistan and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
“Their (missing persons) mentors are crying hoarse and deliberately accusing the state security apparatus of their forcible disappearance,” it said.
The department,however,admitted that 3,655 civilians were killed in the state over the past 22 years while maintaining law and order or in incidents not related to terrorism.
It also said nearly 5,400 security force personnel,including policemen were killed during the two decades of militancy in the state.