'Cops lying about mental illness and political links'
The police's assertion that suspended head constable Abdul Ahad Jan, who hurled a shoe at Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Sunday, was "mentally disturbed" and could have been invited to the Independence Day function by a politician has stirred a controversy. Peerzada Ashiq reports.Updated: Aug 16, 2010 23:51 IST
The police's assertion that suspended head constable Abdul Ahad Jan, who hurled a shoe at Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Sunday, was "mentally disturbed" and could have been invited to the Independence Day function by a politician has stirred a controversy.
Jan's family in Bandipora, more than 40 km northeast of Srinagar, accused the police of "spreading lies" about him.
"Today (on Monday), a police team visited our house looking for any medical prescription on his (Jan's) mental heath, saying, 'If you have any such prescription, it could save his job.' But we made it clear to them he has no mental problem," Jan's son Showkat Ahmad told Hindustan Times on the phone.
Ahmed added, "He has no political connection." The police, however, issued medical certificates of a psychiatric hospital, with Jan's name on them.
Jan, who was produced before a court in Srinagar for police remand, echoed his son's words, saying he had not hurled the shoe at anybody's behest.
"I did it because of my affection for my people who are being killed every day," he said.
"I was beaten up in custody and won't accept anything under duress. They (the police) want me to name PDP or Hurriyat leaders for the act."
Jan, who looked weak, was shifted from the civilian Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences to a police hospital early on Monday morning.
Police sources told HT that the possibility that Jan was allowed to enter the heavily-guarded venue on Sunday by lower-rung policemen as he was a known face in police circles was not being ruled out.
A PDP spokesperson dismissed as "silly and ridiculous" the police's claim that a political party had a hand in letting Jan in the VIP lounge.
Firing in Tral
At least 10 people were reportedly injured on Monday when security forces opened fire on a group of protesters in south Kashmir's Tral town, some 35 km from Srinagar.
A police spokesman said a mob throwing stones targeted two security forces' vehicles near Aabghar in Tral town, and surrounded them.
"They attacked the vehicles and started vandalising them," he said.
"The security forces fired in self-defence, injuring two people."
First Published: Aug 16, 2010 23:48 IST