More than a year after his teenaged son was killed by security forces while playing cricket near his house in Srinagar, Farooq Ahmad Sheikh wants to move on — if the courts allow him to.
Zahid Farooq, 16, was allegedly shot dead by a Border Security Force patrol party on February 5 last year without provocation when he was playing near Nishat Garden, a tourist hub on the outskirts of the city.
His father Sheikh now wants to adopt a child. Sheikh and his wife have filed an application to adopt a 10-day-old boy abandoned by its parents at a hospital. But there are 15 other couples in contention.
“My daughter has gone into depression and Zahid’s mother wants another child, but can’t conceive again. The baby would be Zahid reborn for us,” Sheikh said.
A judge has asked the all the couples in contention to submit proofs they meet the eligibility requirements.
“The judge… will decide after considering parameters like family status, marital age, age of the parents. The interest of the child is supreme,” said senior advocate Bashir Sidiq, who recently fought a similar case of two abandoned girls.
Farooq’s murder had evoked massive protests across the Valley last year. The BSF admitted to “accidentally” killing the teenager after Union home minister P Chidambaram’s intervention.
The police later charged BSF commandant RK Birdi and constable Lakhvinder Kumar with murder, criminal conspiracy, destruction of evidence and attempt to murder. The case was recently transferred to the Jammu wing of the Srinagar high court.