Kashmir: Families of three youth killed in encounter stage protest, demand justice

Srinagar: Amid heavy snowfall, families of three youth who were killed in an encounter last week by a joint team of security forces, held a protest at the Press Enclave Srinagar on Monday, demanding the return of the bodies of the slain for the last rites.

The security forced claimed that the three youth were militants, a claim that the families have refuted. The family members allege that the trio was killed in a staged encounter in the outskirts of Srinagar.  According to them, the slain youth were students and were not affiliated to any militant outfit.

“A day before the encounter, the army took our sons and killed them in a staged encounter the same way three other local youth were killed in a fake encounter in Shopian earlier in July by an army captain,” a family member said.

The families of the slain have now appealed for the return of the bodies and requested the J&K governor for a time-bound inquiry.

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“We appeal the Lt. Governor to hand over the bodies of our sons and order probe in this matter so that the truth could prevail and the slain will get justice,” they said.

Pertinently, the encounter took place on December 30, 2020, where the trio, as per GoC-Kilo Army, were hiding in a house near Srinagar-Baramulla highway and were planning a big attack on the highway.

However, in a statement, the Jammu and Kashmir Police said that there was no criminal record or any FIR against any of the three youth killed. The statement said that the three were OGW’s (overground workers of militants).

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“Sometimes families do not know about what their children are up to,” the statement reads.

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