The family members of Amir Ahmad Magray, who was killed in the alleged gunfight of Hyderpora in Srinagar, staged a protest at Sangaldan in Ramban on Saturday demanding the return of the mortal remains of their kin.
The family also pressed for the outcome of the magisterial probe into the killing of their son.
Talking to The Kashmir Walla, Amir’s father, Muhammad Lateef Magray, said that the family members along with the locals staged a protest after they were left with no option to make administration listen to their pleas.
“We were forced to come out on the streets. We have been appealing to the authorities to return the body of my son but nobody is listening to our pleas,” Magray said.
Magray said that during the protest Superintendent of Police (SP) Ramban assured them that the administration would look into their demands in the next two days.
“SP Ramban told us to wait for two days so that they can take a call on our demands. If our demand for the return of the body won’t be met, we will again protest outside the SP office in Ramban,” Magray said.
Magray, a resident of Gool Tehsil in Ramban, said that the family had also submitted a written request to the District Magistrate (DM) for the return of his son’s body.
On 15 November, an alleged encounter took place in Hyderpora area of Srinagar in which four people including twenty-two-year-old Amir was killed. Amir was accused of being a militant associate.
The other three people that were killed in the gunfight include a resident of Barazulla, Muhammad Altaf Bhat, a businessman and resident of Budgam, Mudasir Gul, who also ran an office in the same building, where the alleged gunfight took place and a “militant” who police claimed was a foreigner named Bilal Bhai alias Haidar. All the four bodies were later buried around 90 kilometers away from the capital city Srinagar, in Wudder Payeen village in north Kashmir’s Handwara district.
However, the families have rejected the police claims and have raised questions about the conduct of the gunfight.
The families of Bhat and Gul held a protest at the press colony in Lal chowk and demanded the bodies of their loved ones. Succumbing to the pressure, the government later returned the bodies amid forces presence, before they were buried by the family at their ancestral graveyard.
The administration had earlier offered Amir’s relatives to have a last glimpse of their kin without handing over the body to the family for the proper burial. However, the family rejected the offer and had requested the authorities to hand over the body for the last rites.
Magray said that he feels betrayed by the government for whom he had fought against the militancy in Jammu district.
“We met the Lieutenant Governor in Jammu and he assured us that my son’s body will be returned in two days. Now it’s been more than one month, there are no signs of my son’s body,” Magray said.
“We also demanded the outcome of the magisterial probe. My son was innocent. Why isn’t the government making magisterial investigation public,” he said.
On 19 November, the government had ordered a magisterial probe into the alleged gunfight, however, more than one month has passed, the government has failed to finalize the report as families of the victims await justice.