S. A Haidri
Muzaffarabad: Ahsan untoo noted human rights activist and Chairman International Forum for Justice and Human Rights (IFJHR) has petitioned the regions High Court seeking re-opening of the case of the killing of 53 civilians in the firing by government forces in 1990 as well as scores of other rights violation cases here.
These cases have seen no headway since New Delhi scrapped the Kashmir’s semi autonomous status last year in August after the closure of the government run State Human Rights Commission, the petition has noted.
Ahsan Untoo, who was recently released from jail after months of detention following scrapping of the semi autonomous status that prevented people from other Indian states to buy land or own other properties here, has noted that the families of those killed in the “massacre” in Gawkadal area of Srinagar have not ” got the justice.”
“I filed the petition before the HC to open Gawakadal massacre case as well as over 550 other cases which have seen no headway since the closure of SHRC,” he said.
He said that an army retired general was among the several people who are facing cases here.
Meanwhile, All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC), today said that it was on account of “unbridled powers bestowed upon” government forces under the “draconian laws of the land that more than one lakh Kashmiri civilians have been killed with bullets and pellets either during massacres or through enforced disappearances,during civil protests and agitations or during cordon and search operations ,fake encounters or in targeted killings .”
On the 31-st “anniversary of the Gaw Kadal massacre” the Hurriyat Conference (APHC) termed the “indifference exhibited by the international community and human rights organizations over the numerous massacres witnessed in Kashmir against Kashmiris, over the past 31 years as distressing and unfortunate.”
“None of the perpetrators have ever been brought to book or punished although many times so called ‘inquiries’ ‘were set up as an immediate remedy to bring the situation under control and assuage peoples anger,” it said.
The government forces have admitted some cases of human rights violations, but dismissed large number of complaints.
The local SHRC was however hearing cases on daily basis even as Army or other Central forces escaped trial in the civilian courts under the armed forces special powers act (AFSPA), Untoo said.