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Family awaits justice for son killed 15 yrs ago in fake encounter..

Syedabad Soiteng in Srinagar outskirts yesterday commemorated the 15th death anniversary of Javaid Ahmad Magrey, a class 12 student, who was allegedly killed by army on May 1, 2003, in a fake encounter. The family and locals reiterated their determination to fight for justice.

The killing had sparked violent protests in the area while complete shutdown was observed in entire Kashmir in protest.

The then Chief Minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed had assured that justice would prevail.

“After an inquiry committee set up by the government found that Javaid (17) was innocent, the State authorities wrote to union defence ministry, seeking sanction to prosecute the nine army personnel against whom the state police filed charges of murder and conspiracy for Javaid’s murder,” GhulamNabiMagrey, father of the deceased told.

“The letter by the State read that the deceased was a student and was not linked with militancy. He was killed by Assam regiment after kidnapping him,” he said.

“The case filed by the Assam regiment against the deceased wherein army had claimed Javaid was a militant from whom arms and ammunitions were recovered, was closed by police after it established during investigation that claims made by army were bundle of lies and Javaid was innocent,” he said while quoting the inquiry report.

However, the family has no knowledge what happened to the case. “We are following it. But it is not easy for a common man to know the status of cases, especially when army invokes draconian law AFSPA even on killings of innocents. It is denial of justice that an innocent is killed by government forces in Kashmir and the state government has to seek permission from Delhi to prosecute the killers,” said the family.

Javaid Ahmad was a brilliant student and a talented sportsman. He had played many district level cricket tournaments and won various trophies.

In the intervening night of 30 April and 1 May 2003, army personnel kidnapped him from his room and later killed him in a fake encounter.

The army claimed that two militants fled from the spot while Javaid got wounded in the encounter. However, authorities established that no encounter took place and Javaid was innocent.

According to a report by Amnesty International, Javaid Ahmad Magrey “is just one of hundreds of victims of alleged human rights violations committed by security force personnel that Amnesty International and other organizations, both local and international, have documented in the course of the past 25 years in Jammu and Kashmir.”

“Indian security forces have been deployed in Jammu and Kashmir for decades, officially tasked with protecting civilians, upholding national security and combating violence by armed groups,” reads the report. “However, in the name of security operations, security force personnel have committed many grave human rights violations which have gone unpunished. The failure to address these abuses violates the rights of the victims and survivors to justice and remedy, which is enshrined in the Constitution of India and international human rights law,” it adds.

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