August 26, 2015 5:37:59 pm
While army says it is ready with the inquiry report into the Chattergam killings of 2014, the J&K government is yet to submit its report to the army.
On November 3, Army patrol party had opened indiscriminate fire on a Maruti car at Chattergam village in Budgam in which five youth were traveling. Two died on the spot, two others sustained serious injuries while the fifth boy had escaped unhurt.
After killings triggered massive protests across the valley, the army had termed the killing as “mistake” and also announced exgratia of ten lakh rupees to the families of the slain youth. Even the injured youths were treated at Army’s Base Hospital at Badamibagh.
Outgoing General Officer Commanding, 15 Corps, Lt General, Subarata Saha told The Indian Express that the army has finalized its inquiry report. “We are waiting for the administration inquiry so that the two are joined together and thereafter whatever the action are required will be taken,’’ he said.
DC Budgam Mir Altaf Ahmad said that he would confirm the status of the case from the concerned officials. “I was not then Deputy Commissioner of this district when the incident took place. So I will have to check the status,” he said.
Sources, however, said that even after eight months state government has failed to complete its inquiry report.
After the incident, J&K government had appointed Sub Divisional Magistrate, Khansahib, Mohammad Ajaz as an inquiry officer. The officer was transferred before he could complete the inquiry.
“There are still few things pending in the inquiry report. The youth who was a key witness in the case was not at his home and had moved to Jammu. We had requested his parents to bring him back to Srinagar to record his statement, but he didn’t turn up that has delayed the submission of the report,” said a senior officer who is privy to the investigations.
Sources said that the inquiry officer had also raised some questions to the claims made by the army about the incident which were never replied by the army.
The Army’s – Court of Inquiry had found nine army men guilty for opening fire on the Maruti car and thus violating the Standard Operational Procedure (SOP). Among the guilty one is an official.
During the court of inquiry, army officials investigated the role of 16 soldiers who were present on the spot when the incident took place. Sources said that only seven army personnel have been given clean chit after collecting evidence against the others.
Police in its First Information Report (FIR) had said that soldiers had opened fire on the Maruti car with an “intention to kill’’ the persons.
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