SRINAGAR: The father and sister of a Srinagar boy who died in hospital in August 2010 after being picked up by police, on Wednesday held a peaceful protest at Srinagar’s Press Enclave to demand that a charge sheet be filed against the police personnel accused of torturing him so badly that he died.
The family said that Umar Qayoom Bhat, 17, was “tortured to death” by the police. Umar’s father, Abdul Qayoom, said that despite an FIR being registered in the case three years ago, on court orders, the police is yet to file the charge sheet.
“On Friday, August 20, 2010, after prayers, stone pelting was going on in our area, Soura. Umar was returning home after prayers but police caught hold of him, beat him up mercilessly, and dragged him to the nearby police post. Next day, he was scheduled to get released at 1pm but police set him free at 7 in the evening,” Qayoom said.
The condition of his son, Qayoom said, had deteriorated during detention but repeated pleas for his release were outrightly rejected by the police officials. After his release, he was admitted to hospital, Qayoom said.
“The doctors discharged Umar from hospital but the next day his condition worsened. I rushed him to the hospital again where doctors said that my son was ’80 percent dead’. They later put him on the ventilator,” Qayoom said.
Umar died in hospital on August 25, 2010, following which a massive protest march against his killing was taken out in the area.
Qayoom said the family approached the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM), the JK State Human Rights Commission, the National Human Rights Commission, and the JK grievance cell for justice. A court order giving 42 days time to police to present the accused policemen in court did not lead to anything, Qayoom said.
“Nearly three years have passed since the First Investigation Report (FIR) was filed on the directions of the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Srinagar in 2018 but police is yet to submit a charge sheet in the case,” Umar’s sister, Uzebe, said.
Umar was one of the 80 civilians who died during the public unrest in 2010. Omar Abdullah, the then CM, had assured justice to the victims. Umar’s case is an example of the hollowness of that assurance.