May 2001 News

BSF probe over, DIG Mullick called to Delhi for attack on journalists

14 May 2001
The Indian Express
Nazir Masoodi

Srinagar: The BSF has summoned its Deputy Inspector General A.K. Mullick to the Delhi office after the force’s May 10 attack on journalists at Magam. The summons comes after the BSF completed a preliminary inquiry into the incident. On the fateful day, Mullick had ordered his men to attack reporters who were at Magam to cover the aftermath of the May 9 IED blast there. In the firing that followed, 11 people, including seven civilians, were killed. BSF Inspector-General K. Vijay Kumar completed the inquiry and left for Delhi yesterday. Mullick accompanied him. According to sources, the inquiry report will be put before the BSF director-general and Mullick will be produced. Apparently, action against the officer is imminent. The BSF has also started an inquiry against Deputy Commandant I.G. Munda of 194 Battalion who had ordered the first attack on the reporters. Mullick had followed suit and triggered the second attack. A senior BSF commandant has been assigned to probe Munda’s and his men’s hand in the attack. During his three-day inquiry, Vijay Kumar met almost all the videographers, photographers and reporters who were assaulted and injured. He also met the Chief Minister, chief secretary, DGP and home secretary. Mullick apparently was upset with a series of personal setbacks, the most prominent being the death of his wife in an ULFA attack. A senior officer, however, said that ‘‘you cannot mix up personal problems with official matters. If found guilty, he will be punished’’. The aggrieved reporters, however, dubbed the probe an eyewash. ‘‘They are trying to hush the case by harping on Mullick’s work against militancy. Even before the probe was completed, voices were raised to protect him from legal action,’’ said Shujaat Bukhari, special correspondent, The Hindu. Kashmir Press, at an emergency meeting here today, expressed surprise over the statement — attributed to the Home Ministry — that Mullick’s services against insurgency would be considered during the inquiry. The organisation dubbed the statement ‘‘irresponsible’’ and threatened drastic steps if action was not taken against errant BSF officers. The state police too have started its investigation. A DSP has been assigned to investigate FIR no. 42-2001 and 43-2001. The BSF DIG and deputy commandant have been charged with attempt to murder under Section 307 RPC.

 

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