A video purportedly showing two Kashmir police officers resigning in public is being widely shared on social media.
The special police officers, indentified as Firdous Ahmed and Waseem Ahmed Shiekh, can be seen announcing their resignation amid cheers in Kashmir’s volatile Sopore district. The duo was garlanded by the crowd, as one of the officers pledged never to join the security forces.
However, Sopore police superintendent Harmeet Singh Mehta told Hindustan Times that no one had resigned. “I have no knowledge of any public announcements, but so far no cop has tendered his resignation,” he said.
Sources said the video was recorded in Behrampora village on Monday, two days after around 80 people were injured there in security forces action.
Locals claimed the two resigned under public pressure over alleged excesses by police.
Waseem was posted at the sub-divisional police officer’s office in Rafiabad Sopore as a driver for the last three years, and Firdous was worked at various local police stations.
Special police officers are employed for a particular purpose, such as anti-Maoist operation or election duty, for a period of seven years, following which their service may be regularised. They may also be inducted into the state police service.
The special police service was started in the 1990s to induct counter insurgents into the police force. There are presently about 6,000 such officers in the force.
Reports suggest that Kashmiri protestors urged local police officers to resign after the killing of a Hurriyat activist, Fayaz Ahmed Rather, on July 29. Rather was murdered by unknown gunmen.
Earlier, a video showing a National Conference leader pledging his support to Kashmir’s “freedom struggle” emerged on social media.
Denying being pressured into resigning, senior leader Iftikhar Hussain Misger, who was fought elections against chief minister Mehbooba Mufti from Anantnag in June this year, said his decision should be an “eye-opener for the chief minister”.
Other political leaders followed suit a few days later, after Misger’s video gained popularity on the internet.