Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah ordered a magisterial inquiry into the “accidental” killing of a youth in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district by the army while the head of Srinagar-based 15 Corps apologised to the family of the deceased, on Saturday.
The region remained tense and shouts of “blood for blood” rendered the area even as the family refused to bury the body. The locals, however, ended their protest and buried the body in the evening, after minister of state for home Nasir Aslam Wani, director general of police Kuldeep Khoda and army’s Lt Gen SA Hasnain met the parents of the deceased and the local people and assured them of speedy justice.
Hasnain apologised to the family and ordered an internal probe. “An innocent youth lost his life due to an accidental fire from one of our jawans. It is regrettable,” he said.
Ashiq Hussain Rather, 22, a resident of Lesar village of Baramulla district, around 75 km from here, was hit by a bullet on Friday when he was in his courtyard.
The People’s Democratic Party and separatists reacted sharply over the killing. “This is the latest case of state terrorism in Kashmir,” said hard-line separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani in Delhi.
People’s Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti termed the killing tragic. “Such incidents shatter the faith of people in the democratic system and create a sense of insecurity,” she said.
An army release said on the basis of “intelligence which indicated presence of terrorists in the village, a column of 32 Rashtriya Rifles established a cordon near a group of houses. This created panic in a house, which led to an accidental discharge of a weapon”.