A former Kashmir top cop on Wednesday claimed to have arrested 1,585 protesters in 2010, including Masarat Alam, which fetched the police a bounty of Rs 15 lakh from the then Omar Abdullah’s government.
“We had to arrest 1,585 agitators from across the valley in 2010 (to bring the situation under control). Alam remained one of the organisers and may not fall in the category of being the most hardliner behind every protest,” said former Srinagar senior superintendent of police (SSP) Syed Ashaq Bukhari.
A few news portals claimed Bukhari was directed by the former CM to bump off the Hurriyat leader.
“I have never made such remarks ever. Yes, we received Rs 15 lakh for the police party which arrested Alam. Seven cops were also given out-of- turn promotions by (CM) Omar Abdullah,” said Bukhari, who was in-charge of law and order in Srinagar during the 2010 street uprising.
Bukhari also claimed to have received Rs 1.5 crore as reward money from the Abdullah government to curb militancy and thwart street protests in the state.
The National Conference reacted sharply to Bukhari’s statements. “From start to end, these are unfounded bundle of lies spread by Bukhari who has no credibility or objectivity,” said NC spokesman Junaid Azim Mattu.
He accused Bukhari of making such statements at PDP’s behest and threatened legal action.
Meanwhile, Srinagar-based rights group Coalition of Civil Society asked Bukhari to stand by his allegations against Abdullah so that it could file a case against the former CM.