By News Desk | Srinagar, Kashmir
A local court in Indian-controlled Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday asked the police for further investigation into the allegations of mass rape of women in North Kashmir’s Kunan Poshpora village.
In the 23 year old case of the mass rape on 23-24 February 1991, a local court of the Judicial Magistrate Kupwara J. A. Geelani, while dismissing the conclusions made by the police in the recently filed closure report returned the case file to the police, asking for further investigation to unravel the identity of those who happen to be perpetrators.
The court also showed the lack of authority in ordering Special Investigation Team (SIT), asked the further investigation to be conducted by an officer not below the rank of Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) and within a time bound period of three months. The petitioners in the case, a group of girls, and the survivors had demanded the re-investigation by SIT, headed by an officer of SSP rank.
On 10 June 2013, a protest petition was filed by Advocate Parvez Imroz on behalf of the survivors of Kunan Poshpora mass rape against the closure report of the police, before the the court. On 13 June 2013, the Chief Prosecuting Officer (CPO) filed objections, and today, oral arguments were made before the court.
The protest petition argued that the police investigations were incomplete and clearly “mala fide as despite having the information on file regarding the involvement of 125 personnel of 4 Rajputana Rifles, the police had not questioned them and neither was an identification parade conducted.”
The court ordered that “until date the investigating agency has not unveiled the identity of the culprits despite having a clear cut nominal role of 125 suspects.”
“Today’s order is an achievement of the struggle of the Kunan Poshpora people along with those who supported their demand for justice. This will surely inspire many more victims of the recent past to wake up and fight for justice in their cases,” said Imroz.