Concern about the tense situation in Shopian where five people were killed in firing by security forces, mainstream leaders in Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday said authorities needed to adopt a serious approach to deal with it.
"The situation demands an immediate and serious approach
and any casual or ad hoc advances to put the problem on the back burner will only precipitate the crisis further," leaders said in a joint statement.
Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPM) state secretary MY Tarigami, People's Democratic Front (PDF) chairperson Hakim Mohammad Yasin, Jammu and Kashmir National Democratic Front (JKNDF) chairperson Abdul Rashid Kabuli, Samajwadi Party (SP) state president Sheikh Abdul Rehman and Communist Party of India (CPI) state secretary Abdul Rehman Tukru issued a joint statement on the situation in Shopian and surrounding areas.
The leaders demanded that the security personnel involved in the incident should be identified and booked. "If anyone has violated the law and has not been brought to book yet, it is an insult to the whole justice-delivery system," the statement said.
The leaders said people were "pessimistic" about the investigation ordered by the state government into Shopian killings.
"The civilian killings in Shopian refresh the memories of firing on peaceful protesters in 2010. In absence of any accountability, these memories have only inculcated into a default anti-national sentiment. It is ironic that instead of prosecuting the guilty in the 2010 civilian killings, nearly 6,000 people, especially the youths, were imprisoned for varying periods, thus marring their careers and traumatising their families," the statement read.
The leaders said three years had passed since the killing of 120 youths in 2010. "People still await answers for what happened to perpetrators who snatched their near and dear ones and who are yet to be brought to justice. Not a single case out of more than 120 civilian killings has reached to any logical conclusion and, in most of these cases, the families of victims are facing victimisation at the hands of administration," leader said in the statement.
"People seem pessimistic about the fate of government investigation ordered into the Shopian incident. People perceive these probes and inquires as a handy weapon to cool down tempers and buy time," it said.
The leaders appealed to the democratic voices in the country to impress upon the Centre to create conditions for a meaningful dialogue process with all shades of political opinion in the state.
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