AFSPA in Kashmir emboldens custodial violence, torture: Owaisi

He made the remarks in the context of recent alleged gruesome violence against three civilians by jawans of the Indian Army.

Hyderabad: AIMIM MP Asaduddin Owaisi on Sunday, December 24, said that the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) in Kashmir is emboldening custodial violence and torture.

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He made the remarks in the context of recent alleged gruesome violence against three civilians by jawans of the Indian Army.

The three men, aged between 27 and 42, were found dead under “mysterious circumstances” on Friday.

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The development came against the backdrop of the death of five soldiers in a terror attack in Poonch district.

“Horrifying news from #Kashmir. @PMOIndia compensation is not enough. AFSPA in Kashmir emboldens such custodial violence and torture. The culprits need to be investigated and punished under civilian laws,” he said in a post on X.

The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Saturday, December 23, announced compensation and jobs to the kin of the three civilians who were found dead near the site of an anti-terrorist operation in Poonch district.

Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti held a press conference in Srinagar on Saturday, December 23, raising questions on the Indian Army’s role in the death of three civilians on Friday, December 22.

“Reports are coming from Topa Peer village near Bafliaz in Poonch district suggesting that the Indian Army picked up 15 people for interrogation. Among them, the bodies of three people – Safir Hussain, Shaukhat Hussain, and Mohammed Shabeer – are seen lying on the ground while chilli powder is being smeared on their bruises. The remaining 12 people are currently receiving medical treatment in various hospitals,” Mufti said adding that she was unable to prove the authenticity of the video.

Several regional political parties like the Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP), Jammu & Kashmir National Conference (JKNC), and Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP) condemned the civilian killings and held protests demanding justice.

Full support to probe: Army

The Army is committed to extending full support and cooperation in the conduct of an investigation into the deaths of three civilians during an operation to track down terrorists behind the recent ambush on two Army vehicles that left five soldiers dead, the force said on Saturday, December 23.

Their relatives and political leaders, however, alleged that they were among the eight people picked up by the Army for questioning in connection with Thursday’s ambush.

In a post on X, the Additional Directorate General of Public Information (ADGPI) of the Indian Army said, “Search operations by the security forces are continuing in the area of operations after the incident of December 21. Reports have been received regarding three civilian deaths in the area. The matter is under investigation. The Indian Army stands committed to extending full support and cooperation in the conduct of investigations.”

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