Shopian encounter: Bodies of three Rajouri labourers exhumed, handed to families

Fathers of the three labourers were present at the time of exhumation along with social activist Guftar Choudhary.

The Jammu and Kashmir government has exhumed the bodies of the three Rajouri labourers killed in an “encounter” in South Kashmir’s Shopian in July. The bodies were exhumed during night in the presence of the families and handed over to them.

On September 18, the Army had admitted that the three individuals killed in the Shopian “encounter” were missing labourers from Rajouri.

“Yes, the bodies have been exhumed and handed over to the families,” Guftar Choudhary, a social activist who accompanied the families for the exhumation, told on Saturday. “The bodies were exhumed around 5.30 am.”

J-K Director General of Police (Dilbagh Singh) had on Friday said the bodies would be exhumed soon.

The three labourers from Rajouri — Imtiyaz Ahmad (20), Abrar Ahmad (25) and Mohammad Ibrar (16) — were killed in a fake encounter in South Kashmir Amshipora village in Shopian on July 18. The Army and the police had dubbed the three labourers as unidentified militants and buried them discreetly in a graveyard in North Kashmir’s Baramulla.

The cover over the discreet operation was blown on August 10, when the pictures of the bodies of the three labourers were leaked on social media, a day after the families had filed a missing report. The families of the labourers on Kotranka tehsil of Rajouri identified them from the pictures as their missing sons. Following this, the Army ordered a probe into the killing of the three labourers.

On September 21, the Army’s court of inquiry confirmed that the three men were actually Rajouri labourers. It was further confirmed by the DNA results.

Fathers of the three labourers were present at the time of exhumation along with social activist Choudhary.

The families left for Rajouri, in an ambulance, on Saturday morning.


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