Srinagar: A magisterial probe ordered into the killing of a youth in Baramulla town of Jammu and Kashmir in March has indicted the Army for firing on unarmed and peaceful people without any justification.
"Taking into account the evidence that has come up during the inquiry proceedings, it is concluded that on March 5, 2013, the 46 Rashtriya Rifles Army personnel ransacked residential houses and vehicles in Kakar Hamam and Ganai Haman localities without any reason, and subsequently without any justification fired upon unarmed and peaceful citizens that led to the death of Tahir Rasool Sofi and injuries to Mohammad Abbas Lillu," the inquiry report said.
The report, submitted to the state government in August, said warning shots were not fired in the air by the Army that could have scared away the youths, and bullets were fired directly at the youths.
"There seems (to be) no valid reason for the action that was taken by the Army personnel, resulting in the loss of an innocent life and injuries to the teenager who has been rendered handicapped for the rest of his life," the report said.
Sofi`s killing sparked massive protests, forcing authorities to clamp curfew in major towns and districts of the Valley.
Additional District Magistrate Baramulla Manzoor Ahmad Qadri, who conducted the probe, in his report dismissed the claims made by Commanding Officer of the Army unit concerned that a group of youths had attacked an Army patrol at a bus stand in the town, creating life-threatening situation for the soldiers and prompting them to open fire.