April 1999 News

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Government defends NC leader with militant links

8th April 1999
Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU: Minister of State for Home Mr Mushtaq Lone today admitted in the Legislative Assembly that some arms and explosives were recovered from the house of National Conference block president of Koteranka Chowdhary Mir Hussain during a search operation conducted by the Army.

Replying to a Call Attention Notice of BJP member Mr Ashok Khajuria in the Legislative Assembly, Mr Lone said 39 Artillery Brigade of Army had effected recovery of arms and explosives from the house of Chowdhary Mir Hussain and picked him up for questioning.

He said after getting a report SP Rajouri asked SP Operations Koteranka to get in touch with Army authorities and ascertain the facts about the recovery of explosives from Mir Hussain's house. Chowdhary Mir Hussain was handed over to SP Operations Koteranka by the Army authorities. However, police released him after recording his statement.

Army authorities later lodged a written report with the police giving details of the recovery made from Mir Hussain's house. The seizure include 1.5 kgs deadly RDX, two hand grenades, two electric detonators, two time switches, live rounds of Chinese pistol of 7.62 bore and one letter written on Hizbul Mujahideen's letter pad asking the recipient not to fail in the assignment task this time.

The MoS Home said a cognizable report under No. 12 was entered in the daily diary of police post Koteranka and was sent to SHO police station Budhal for further necessary action. The SP Operations Koteranka had been asked to personally investigate the matter to bring out the facts. Army authorities have also been asked to associate the local police/SOG in all such cases so that facts are ascertained.

Mr Khajuria said that National Conference leaders were shielding anti-national elements in several militancy-infested areas. He said the ruling party leaders were also interfering in the working of security forces and police and were instrumental in the release of several militants.

Calling upon all political parties to let the security forces do their job, Mr Khajuria said the security forces should be allowed to work freely to eliminate the militants. "There should be no interference from any quarter on the security forces if the Pakistan-sponsored militancy has to be crushed", he asserted.

Meanwhile, the reply to Call Attention Notice given by the Minister was silent as to why no First Information Report (FIR) was lodged against the National Conference leader even as deadly explosives including RDX was recovered from his house. The reply only said the matter was entered in the daily dairy.

Instead, the Minister tried to defend the National Conference leader by saying that there is a possibility of a frame-up to malign the reputation of National Conference leader.

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