Srinagar: Three teenagers accused of murder and involvement in militancy related activities have escaped from the Juvenile Home in Harwan area of Srinagar, following a tiff with fresh inmates on Monday night.
The juveniles have fashioned a rope out of quilt covers to escape through a window on the second storey of the Home.
A senior official said the trio, one of them from Bihar, have been lodged at the facility for different durations on charges of murder and abetting militancy. The juvenile from Bihar had also made a failed attempt to flee from the juvenile home earlier but had been apprehended and brought back to the facility, a source said.
Juveniles are protected under law
The juvenile justice act, 2013, prohibits naming the juveniles in news reports. The law prescribes that in case of a juvenile’s escape, a report of circumstances leading to such escape should be sent to the concerned police station or Special Juvenile Police Unit along with the details and description of the juvenile, including identification marks and a photograph with a copy to the Board, District Child Protection Unit and other authorities concerned. Also, the guards or concerned staff has to be dispatched in search of the juvenile at places such as railway stations, bus stands and other places where the juvenile is likely to go. Parents or guardians of the juveniles have to be informed about such escape and a detailed report has to be submitted to the Board and the authorities concerned within 15 days of escape explaining the reasons for such escape and action taken thereof.
One among the two local youngsters hails from Tral. He was lodged in the facility last month. The other teen has been at the home for the past four months.
The Tral youngster, whom this reporter met in the juvenile facility last month, had denied the charges that he was involved in militancy related activities. The teenager is related to Burhan Muzaffar Wani, the divisional commander of Hizbul Mujahideen, who in the words of Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, has emerged as youth icon in Kashmir.
The teenager had told Kashmir Reader that he was being detained for his relation with Burhan even as he expressed his desire to pursue education after being released from the juvenile home. “I spend my day while memorizing the holy Quran and offer prayers five times daily,” the teen had told this reporter.
Kashmir Reader has learnt that five stone throwers were admitted in the facility on Monday night. Around 10 pm, the inmate from Tral asked the new arrivals to recite the Kalima, the statement of Muslim faith. Sources said that while four of them passed the test, one teenager was not able to recite the Kalmia. This triggered a verbal dual and subsequent scuffle between the inmates.
Sources said that in the aftermath of scuffle, the managers of the facility separated the inmates, sending the seniors, including the murder-accused Bihar boy, to the top floor. The separation provided them a chance to flee.
Srinagar senior superintendent of police Srinagar Amit Kumar said they have filed a case and have started investigations to “get them back”.