Civilian killings: Comm seeks two-month extension

The judicial Commission probing civilian killings in Kashmir Valley has sought a two-month extension.

Srinagar: The judicial Commission probing 17 civilian killings during the June-July unrest in Kashmir Valley has sought a two-month extension as it has not been able to complete the probe within the stipulated time-frame.

The two member Commission headed by Justice (retired) Bashiruddin Ahmad has written a letter to Jammu and Kashmir government to extend its term by two months for completing the probe, official sources said here on Wednesday.

The sources said the Commission, which also comprises Justice (retd) YP Nargotra, has sought extension as "the enquiry is not likely to be completed within the stipulated time".
"The Commission is presently recording the evidence produced by the government which shall be followed by recording of facts from the other side," it said in the letter to state Law Department last week.

This is the second extension sought by the Commission as its term was extended in October by one month.

The Commission, appointed by the state government on July 27 following an All Party Meeting convened by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, was initially given three months to complete the probe. Later one-month extension was granted to it on October 28, the sources said.

The Commission is probing the 17 killings that took place between June 11 and July 19, the first five weeks of the unrest in Kashmir Valley.
The Commission issued a notification on August 31, seeking information on affidavits from the eyewitnesses within 15 days. However, the date for filing the affidavits was extended by a month after no one turned up at the expiry of the first deadline.

The terms of reference of the Commission include to enquire into the circumstances leading to deaths by firing or otherwise into the 17 incidents, fixing responsibility wherever excessive force has been used resulting in fatalities, suggest measures to avert the recurrence of such incidents in future, recommend the action to be taken against the persons or authorities found responsible in any such incident.