99 Ganderbal custodial killing: ‘Charge sheet filed against Muma Ikhwani, awaiting prosecution sanction against 2 army officers’

99 Ganderbal custodial killing: ‘Charge sheet filed against Muma Ikhwani, awaiting prosecution sanction against 2 army officers’

Srinagar: The Crime Branch of Police has filed a charge sheet against a former counter-insurgent Muma Ikhwani, even as it awaits sanction for prosecution against two army officers for their alleged involvement in the “custodial killing” of a man in Ganderabl district of central Kashmir in 1999.
Disclosing it in a compliance report filed before the High Court here, the crime branch submitted that the split charge sheet against Ghulam Mohammad Sheikh alias Muma Ikhwani of Checki Sehpora Ganderbal has been filed before the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate Ganderbal last month.
“It is further submitted that in respect of army officers namely Major Sunny Kurian, now colonel, and Major M R Nunia, the then officiating adjutant 5 RR Duderhama Ganderbal, a letter dated 30 November 2015 has been communicated to Director General Of Police by State Crime Branch Headquarters for accord of prosecution sanction,” the crime branch said.
After obtaining the sanction, the crime branch said that a split charge sheet will be present before the competent court.
The report has been filed by the crime branch in compliance to the directions by the high court orders (2 and 11 December last year) on a petition filed by filed by Khatija Begum, seeking identification and punishment of those behind kidnapping and custodial killing of her son Mohammad Sultan Bhat.
She has also sought the implementation of the recommendations of SHRC directing the government to reopen the FIR (No. 158 of 1999) registered in Police Station Ganderbal.
The SHRC had recommended reinvestigation into the matter and had also directed government to pay ex-gratia relief of Rs one lakh to the affected family. However, the government had not implemented the recommendations.
After the police investigation, the family had approached the DGP with the request of carrying out a fresh investigation into the case. The DGP referred the case to Crime Branch.
In its report, the Crime Branch had said that Mohammad Sultan was picked up by Army unit of 5 RR stationed at Ganderbal from his residence during the intervening night of September 19/20, 1999. He was later killed.
In one of the previous status report, the crime branch informed the high court that Major M R Nunia and Col Sunny Kurian (then Major) killed Bhat in 1999.
“During the course of the investigation, brother and mother of the deceased (Bhat) have maintained in their statements that deceased was picked up by one Ghulam Mohammad Sheikh alias Muma Ikhwani,” the crime branch had said.

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