September 27, 2016 3:10:28 am
THE JAMMU & Kashmir government Monday informed Supreme Court that pellet injuries, and not a bullet shot at point-blank range by the Srinagar Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), had caused the death of a youth who was apparently leading a protest against the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani.
Submitting two reports in a sealed cover envelope, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told a bench led by Justice P C Ghose that the forensic reports have established that Shabir Ahmad Mir, 26, had died after a cartridge hit his back and burst inside his body, thereby shattering several pellets.
The other report, sources have told The Indian Express, has apprised the court of a statement by Abdul Rehman Mir, Shabir’s father and the complainant in the case. In his statement before a Srinagar judicial magistrate on September 19, Mir retracted from his previous allegation that DSP Yasir Wadri, along with a police team, had on July 10 entered their house and shot his son from close range.
This statement was recorded after the Supreme Court bench favoured an independent investigation into the matter. Mir, in his latest statement, has reportedly said that the family had come out of the house after hearing a commotion and found his son lying on the ground with injuries on his back.
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Representing the state government, Rohatgi said, “It was an unfortunate incident. We are not treating it as an adversarial litigation. It is unfortunate that young people are dying in disturbances in the state. But we have to go by what the reports have said, and the postmortem report belies the claim of the victim’s father.”
He said the investigation has been completely transparent and the autopsy reports have identified the real cause of the death. “It was pellet…not bullet, as claimed by the deceased’s father,” Rohatgi said. “This court may have a look at the reports and then pass appropriate orders.”
The bench took the two reports on record and said it would examine them before passing any further directives in the matter. The case has been adjourned to November 23.
On the last date, the bench had sought reports on investigation and postmortem on Shabir while observing that even police officials need to act with “humanity, love and affection”. It is hearing an appeal filed by the J&K government against a refusal by the High Court to intervene with the coercive orders passed by a judicial magistrate in Srinagar.
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