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Khanyar Massacre: Police say probe stalled as CRPF ‘not cooperating

Twenty seven years after government forces carried out a massacre at Khanyar here, police say the investigation got stalled because the accused Central Reserve Police Force didn’t cooperate in the probe.

On May 8, 1991, the CRPF personnel opened fire on a procession at Khanyar carrying bodies of civilians killed in Dachigam and Saida Kadal earlier, killing 28 civilians including five women and an infant, besides injuring 52 people.

In a report submitted before the State Human Rights Commission, police said the identification of the accused persons by the eye-witnesses could not be carried out by the investigating officers due to non-cooperation of the said CRPF battalion.

But the names of the accused persons with ranks has been mentioned in the report lodged by the said CRPF battalion for lodging FIR in the same instance and the said FIR – 42/1991 – has been closed as ‘non-admitted’ which is a primary evidence in the case against the accused persons.

Adding further, police states that at the time of the occurrence the IO has failed to seize the duty roster which is a lacuna in the case, however the same cannot be seized at this instant time after a long gap.

And the weapon of offence has not been seized in the case due to non-cooperation of the said battalion, on account of which the forensic /ballistic examination of the seized cartridges couldn’t be done.

Police had also submitted a report before the SHRC earlier stating that it was yet to translate the case file in English and sent it to Home department for accord of government sanction.

In 2013, a petition was filed by chairperson International Forum for Justice and Human Rights in this connection. The Commission had sought a report from the DGP.

And after five years, the police submitted a report. The report states, “Report received from IGP Kashmir Zone Srinagar reveals that on 08-05-1991 case FIR NO. 41/1991 was registered in police station Khanyar regarding death of 21 persons and 54 injured persons in the shootout by 2nd Battalion CRPF personnel at Khanyar Srinagar.”

The report further states, “The investigation of the instant case was closed as challaned. Subsequently, the file was submitted to Home department for accord of government sanction, wherefrom the case file was returned with some observation/ queries which are being taken care of.”

The Commission asked the chief prosecuting officer (CPO) to file the copy of final report which was sent to the Home secretary.

On these directions, the CPO submitted the final report, which states, “The investigation of case was closed as challaned. Subsequently, the file was submitted to Home department for accord of government sanction, wherefrom the case file was returned with some observation/ queries. The same were replied and the file was again submitted to Home department for accord of sanction.”

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