Ajas: A shutdown was observed Thursday in Ajas village of Bandipora district to commemorate the killing of five civilians by BSF during a crackdown in February 1992.
Shops and businesses remained shut as a mark of respect, while transporters desisted from plying passenger vehicles.
Residents assembled at Jamia Masjid Ajas, where the incident had taken place 26 years ago, and offered Zuhar prayers in congregation. Afterwards a peaceful protest rally was taken out in which Hurriyat activists also took part. The protesters carried placards and banners demanding an FIR be launched against the killers.
The rally culminated near the Martyrs graveyard where people offered Fatiha. Locals said many posters narrating the incidents had been defaced by government forces.
ON Feb 1, 1992, BSF troopers launched a crackdown in the village and dragged people out for an identification parade at Jamiaq Masjid lawn.
“It was Shab-e-Mehraj. The youth resisted the call by saying that it is a holy day today so leave us in peace. But they (BSF) men didn’t listen. After this, a peaceful protest rally was carried out but the soldiers cracked down on the protesters and dragged them out of homes. Then they took the protesters into the lawns of Jamia Masjid Ajas.
“Then the officer in a fit of rage pointed his gun towards the people and shot four persons on the spot, they had raised their voices against the torture of some youth” a witness said
A fifth man, Wali Rehman Khan, a government employee, was later tortured to death in front of the youth, and his body carried along.