Srinagar: A court here has posted on May 4 a Criminal Revision Petition regarding the murder of Kashmiri Pandit Satish Tickoo in February 1990 here.
It was after several hearings that advocate Utsav Bains, the counsel for the family, appeared before the court. He had been continuously seeking adjournments, mostly through applications filed via email before the 1st Additional District & Sessions Judge.
The petitioner, Maharaj Krishan Tickoo, brother of Satish Tickoo, challenges the order passed by a Magistrate court in September 2021 whereby the application seeking direction to complete the investigation with regard to killing of Kashmiri Pandit Satish Tickoo in February 1990 and filing of the charge-sheet was dismissed in default (non appearance of the counsel).
In his revision petition Maharaj Krishan Tickoo submits that his brother Satish Tickoo was a social activist Kashmiri Pandit who was extending support to other Kashmiri Pandit Families who had lost their loved ones.
He submits that on 2 February 1990 Farooq Ahmad Dar alias Bitta Karate along-with co-accused fired gun-shots at Tickoo at his residence in Habba kadal due to which he sustained fatal injuries and was shifted to SMHS Srinagar where he was declared as dead.
He submits that on 19 July 2021, he moved an application under Section 156(3) Cr.P.C. before the Judicial Magistrate for monitoring of the investigation and calling of progress report in connection with the incident of his brother’s killing at Habbakadal besides seeking a direction to the Investigating Officer to complete the investigation and file the charge-sheet at the earliest. He submits that on 01 September 2021 the application was listed before the Judicial Magistrate/Special Mobile Magistrate/Railway Magistrate Srinagar and at 9.16 am, before the hearing of the matter, his counsel contacted criminal Clerk and informed him that as adequate security arrangements vide Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) notification upon order of the Supreme Court had not been made by CRPF (Central Reserve Police Force), he would not be able to appear in the matter and had sought an adjournment. The counsel, the petitioner said, requested Criminal Clerk to apprise the Court about the adjournment.
He submits that the Judicial Magistrate / Special Mobile Magistrate / Railway Magistrate Srinagar instead of adjourning the matter as requested by his Counsel dismissed the same for default, i.e., non-appearance for counsel. This order is under challenge in the revision petition before the sessions court.
In a 1991 interview Karate, now a leader in the banned Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF), purportedly said to have killed dozens of Pandits, including Tickoo, during insurgency in the Kashmir Valley that led to the community’s exodus.
However Bita karate later said he did not kill anyone and stated that his statement had been made under “duress”.
Karate, who was arrested in 2019 by the National Investigation Agency in a militant funding case, had earlier been in jail for nearly 16 years between November 1990 and 2006 on various charges ranging from murders to other heinous acts of militancy.
He was granted bail by a TADA court in 2006 on ground of inordinate delay in framing of charges against him.
After his release, Karate had parted ways with Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front led by Mohammad Yasin Malik and is now part of another faction of the JKLF and in jail in a separate case.