In a region mired in conflict, it takes all the more courage, and perseverance to be the voice of the voiceless, and to separate facts from propaganda. Help The Kashmir Monitor sustain so that we continue to be editorially independent. Remember, your contributions, however small they may be, matter to us.

Cop arrested, suspended over Kangan killing; Shopian march foiled

Srinagar, Apr 04: Police on Wednesday suspended a police constable pending inquiry into the killing of Gowhar Ahmad Rather, the 22-year-old youth who was injured in police action at Kangan on Monday and succumbed later.
SSP Ganderbal Fayaz Ahmad said that constable Gulzar Ahmad has been placed under suspension in connection with the death of Gowhar.
“Consequent upon his prima facia involvement in case FIR No. 18/2018 u/s 307 RPC Selection Grade Constable Gulzar Ahmad (belt no. 422/Gbl) is hereby placed under suspension with immediate effect, pending enquiry,” reads an order issued by the SSP.
The police have already ordered a departmental inquiry into the killing to be headed by DIG central Kashmir. Separately the district administration has ordered the magisterial inquiry to be completed within 20-days.
Gowhar had sustained serious firearm head injuries on Monday late afternoon and was taken to SKIMS Soura where he succumbed to injuries after 20-hours.
The departmental inquiry follows police’s initial claims that Gowhar died after being hit on the head with drainage edge while falling during the chase of protesters by police. However, medical reports rebutted police claims confirming what locals stated that he was fired upon from close blank range by police.
Gowhar was buried early Wednesday even as shutdown crippled normal life in Ganderbal district.
Meanwhile, Kashmir continued to remain shut on the third day as well following the civilian and militant killing in Sunday’s encounters in Shopian and Anantnag districts.
The authorities on Wednesday foiled the Joint Hurriyat proposed march towards Shopian by imposing restrictions in most parts of south Kashmir and detaining chairman of Hurriyat (M) Mirwaiz Moulvi Omar Farooq and preventing Hurriyat (G) chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani from leaving his house.
All roads leading to Shopian town were closed by forces and state police by establishing ‘nakas’ at different places to prevent people from assembling there.
The authorities had imposed restrictions under Section 144 CrPC in Anantnag, Kulgam, Shopian and other major towns in south Kashmir.
Large number of forces and state police personnel remained deployed to strictly implement the restrictions. However, people in some main towns, including Shopian, alleged that situation on the ground was entirely different as they were not being allowed to move of their houses.
Joint Hurriyat Leadership, comprising Geelani, Mirwaiz and Yasin Malik, had announced to march towards Shopian to express solidarity with the families of those killed in the Sunday violence.
Five civilians died in forces action on demonstrators who had hit the streets against the killing of 13 militants in three different encounters in the district.
Three soldiers were also killed in these encounters and several others wounded. The authorities already suspended mobile internet service in the south Kashmir.
Besides, train service also remained suspended for the past four days in the valley.
Forces also closed all roads between Pulwama and Shopian since early Wednesday morning to prevent separatists from going there.
Similarly, all roads from villages to main town were also closed with barbed wires and naka checking. Hundreds of forces personnel remained deployed on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway, particularly from Pampore to Qazigund to prevent any stone pelting.