While babus discussed human rights inside posh auditorium, father and sisters of boy ‘tortured to death in custody’ protested outside

While babus discussed human rights inside posh auditorium, father and sisters of boy ‘tortured to death in custody’ protested outside

Srinagar: On world human rights day, bureaucrats as well as top officials from the government including law minister, Abdul Haq Khan, Inspector General Police, Munir Ahmad Khan, Director General of Police, SP Vaid and Divisional commissioner Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan besides many others were assembled at Sher-e-Kashmir International Conference Centre to discuss and listen about human rights.
The event was organized by State Human Rights Commission and about a hundred guests mostly from administration had been invited to attend the event. “I am a victim of human rights violations I should let them (guests) know about my plight,” with these intentions, Abdul Qayoom Bhat- father of Omar Qayoom who was killed during summer agitation of 2010, says he thought so to attend the event.
As Qayoom along with his two daughters, reached the venue, policemen guarding the main gate stopped the family and refused their request to enter the venue. “This is not for you people,” one among several policemen shouted at Qayoom.
“Whose human rights they are talking about inside? I am the victim of HR violations. Rather than delivering sermons within four walls, ask me who is the culprit,” Qayoom shouted back. Later, one among the policemen called someone from inside and asked him if any commoner was allowed to get in. ‘No,’ pat came the answer from the other side.
After finding no chance of entry, Qayoom holding a banner depicting his son’s photograph, sat outside the gate with his two daughters and held a “peaceful protest for no action” against the alleged killers of his 17-year old son despite passing of seven years.
Sensing trouble, a senior police official which family says claimed himself as station house officer of Khanyar police station asked family “to leave the venue and seek justice in court”. “He tried to snatch the banner that we were holding but failed to do so. His words were so aggressive that it looked as if he is about to thrash all of us,” elder sister of Qayoom told Kashmir Reader.
For next several minutes when invitees were getting off from vehicles and entering the venue, family kept on their protest bearing glances of guests that family described as “criminal salience”.
“I had not gone there to create any drama or for the sake of registering protests but I wanted to tell those discussing human rights inside that they should preserve human rights not just observe it,” Qayoom said. Later, family moved to press enclave and held a silent demonstration there.
Umar, an 11th class student, was one among the more than 120 youths killed in 2010. He was allegedly tortured to death in police station Soura during the valley wide agitation that year.
It has been seven years since the Umar’s death, but no FIR has been lodged about his death, allegedly in police custody at Soura Police Station. The distressed father has been running from pillar to post to bring criminals to justice. The case is under trail at lower court in Srinagar.
On November 15, state counsel admitted before the court that the CRPF personnel beat-up Umar before he died at SKIMS. On being asked as to whether the police knew that CRPF personnel were involved in thrashing of Umar the counsel said that it was the negligence of concerned police station and sought time of two weeks to ascertain the facts from the police department.
“But court and state counsel is making case complex by asking just one question that why I didn’t allow post-mortem of my son which I have been justifying in every hearing. I was told about post-mortem after nine months after my son’s death, my family couldn’t bear that had I allowed it,” Qayoom maintains.