Sunday, June 6, 2010

Probe 2700 unmarked mass graves: IPTK

Srinagar, June 06: International People’s Tribunal on Human Rights and Justice in Kashmir (IPTK) Sunday reiterated its demand of conducting a probe into the presence of 2700 unnamed mass graves found across 55 villages in Bandipora, Baramulla and Kupwara districts of north Kashmir containing more than 2,943 bodies. The development comes after the expose of fake encounter of three youth of Nadihal Rafiabad in Machil sector on April 30. On April 30, army killed Shehzad Ahmad, Riyaz Ahmad and Muhammad Shafi in a fake encounter claiming them to be “infiltrating militants” from Pakistan. In a statement, IPTK also demanded a probe into the killings of 20 persons who army said were militants killed in different gunfights. “These cases require transparent and independent investigations.” The statement said that the State government and Government of India had not undertaken investigations into the findings of ‘Buried Evidence’ a report that revealed the presence of 2700 unnamed mass graves across north Kashmir in 2009. “The government is yet to act on its recommendations. Had GoI or the State government acted on the recommendations of ‘Buried Evidence’, the action might have generated constructive interventions into the continuing chain of extrajudicial executions by the Indian military and paramilitary.”

The IPTK statement said: “Shehzad Ahmad, Riyaz Ahmad and Muhammad Shafi were lured, kidnapped, involuntarily disappeared, and murdered by members of the Indian armed forces and state-sponsored militia. They were persuaded to leave their homes in Nadihal village in Baramulla for the 4 Rajputana Rifles Unit camp in Kalaroos Kupwara with the promise of paid employment for moving arms and ammunition along the LoC.

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