27 RR disallows officials, locals to look for missing person inside the camp

The 27 RR stationed at Devar area in North Kashmir’s Kupwara district allegedly disallowed government officials and locals to look inside the camp where the missing person Manzoor Ahmad Khan was allegedly tortured.
Apart from the missing person Manzoor Ahmad Khan, another man who was allegedly beaten ruthlessly by army was identified as Nasrullah Khan.
Pertinent to mention here, the incident took place on evening of 31st of August.
Human rights activist and chairman of International Forum for Justice, Ahsan Untoo Friday alleged that the police officials and locals were disallowed to look for the disappeared person inside the Devar camp after they had requested the army persons to let them search for the missing person.
Untoo said, “Outside the gate of RR camp, 85-year-old Manzoor’s mother Misra Begum waited to be allowed inside the camp to look for her disappeared son who was allegedly tortured by the army personnel.”
He said, “The Devar villagers fear that missing person has been killed in custody during the torture or there is something wrong which they are hiding.”
Untoo further said he has filed a petition with the State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) to trace the whereabouts of Manzoor and to seek justice to Nasrullah who was also tortured and is battling for life in SKIMS hospital Srinagar.
Untoo said: “For the six months of the summer season the Devar villagers used to earn their major chunk by cattle rearing and growing vegetables on the foothills of Trumimukh Mountain which is near to the 27 RR camp.”
He said, “On 31st of August, five to seven persons including Manzoor, his mother, and Nasrullah of Devar village of North Kashmir’s Kupwara district were going for cattle rearing in the foothills of Trumimukh Mountains.”
Untoo further added, “Before reaching the foothills they are supposed to prove their identity by showing identity cards to the army persons.”
“When Nasrullah went inside the camp for the entry purpose and did not come back for 40 minutes, then Manzoor also went in to call him,” he said.
“Manzoor also did not come back as they both were being held and tortured by the army in two separate rooms allegedly sheltering militants in their house a few days back,” Untoo said.
Nasrullah’s nephew Shabir Ahmad said, “My uncle was lying in the cow dung outside our home and we were not aware of that.”
Shabir also said: “When we asked the army where was our uncle, they said they have dropped him back and told us to search keenly outside our home.”
Shabir further said, “When we reached home and started searching for uncle, we found him lying in the cow dung and immediately we took him to SKIMS hospital.”
“During the torture, the army personnel damaged both the kidneys of my uncle and this clearly depicts that this is barbarism,” he said.
Senior Superintendent of Police Kupwara, Shamsher Hussain told Kashmir Post, “The talk about search operation inside the Devar camp is a rumor and nobody was saying so.”
Hussain said, “Police is investigating the case and we are trying to trace the missing Manzoor.”
While lamenting on the issue, Deputy Commissioner (DC) Kupwara Khalid Jehangir said: “Police is investigating the case and army has also instituted a probe into this matter.”
Srinagar based army spokesperson Rajesh Kalia said that army is investigating the incident.
“Investigation is going on and everything will come to the fore after proper investigation,” Kalia said.
On Thursday army spokesperson issued a statement that said Chinar Corps Commander; JS Sandhu visited the area and interacted with officials.
“Taking cognizance of the reports of the disappearance of Manzoor Ahmed of Kakar Patti (Lolab), the Chinar Corps Commander visited the area today and personally interacted with officials. A joint inquiry team comprising senior police and army officers is investigating the case. Suitable action will be taken based on the outcome of the inquiry,” army statement said.

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