The Army has found “prima facie” evidence that its troops “exceeded” their powers under the Armed Forces Special Powers Act during an encounter in Kashmir’s Shopian district in which three men were killed in July this year and has initiated disciplinary proceedings.
On July 18, the Army claimed three militants were killed in Amshipura village in the higher reaches of south Kashmir’s Shopian district.
Following complaints from families of the deceased persons’ and social media reports that the three men were from Rajouri district in Jammu and had gone missing at Amshipura, the Army initiated an inquiry, said Col Rajesh Kalia, the defence spokesperson in Srinagar.
“The inquiry has brought out certain prima facie evidence indicating that during the operation, powers vested under the AFSPA1990 were exceeded and the Do’s and Don’ts of Chief of Army Staff as approved by the Supreme Court have been contravened. Consequently, the competent disciplinary authority has directed to initiate disciplinary proceedings under the Army Act against those found prima-facie answerable,” the statement said.
It is not immediately clear how many Army men are being proceeded against. The evidence collected indicates the three unidentified terrorists killed in Amshipura were Imtiyaz Ahmed, Abrar Ahmed and Mohammed Ibrar who hailed from Rajouri. Their DNA report is awaited. “Their involvement with terrorism or related activities is under investigation by the police,” the statement said.
Relatives of the three youths had lodged a written missing persons report after they lost contact with them on July 17.
According to the rules, a Summary of Evidence will now be initiated against the erring Army personnel after which Court Martial proceedings will begin.