Two top cops arrested in Kashmir for murder of civilians
3 February 2007
Indo-Asian News Service
Srinagar: Two senior police officers were arrested here Saturday for their involvement in disappearances and murders of civilians in Jammu and Kashmir even as a fourth body was exhumed on suspicion that the victim was shot dead after being labelled a militant. H.R. Parihar, former Ganderbal Senior Superintendent of Police and Bahadur Ram, former Ganderbal Deputy Superintendent of Police, were arrested relating to the forced disappearance and subsequent murder of a civilian, Abdul Rehman Paddar, a resident of south Kashmir's Larnoo village, in a shootout staged by the special operations group (SOG) Dec 9 last year.'We have arrested Parihar and Ram in the forced disappearance and subsequent murder of Abdul Rehman Paddar,' S.M. Sahai, Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Zone, told IANS.The body of Paddar, a carpenter, who disappeared here in mysterious circumstances Dec 8, was killed after he was labelled a foreign mercenary by the SOG the next day. These staged killings are described in media here as 'encounters'.Rehman's body, which was exhumed from the Batmohalla graveyard Feb 1, was later identified by his distraught father in presence of forensic experts and senior police officers.On Friday, authorities carried out another exhumation in the Wanipora graveyard of Ganderbal area.The grave digger had identified the photograph of Nazir Ahmad Deka, a south Kashmir perfume vendor, saying he had buried him in the same grave where exhumation was carried out.A bottle of perfume was also recovered along with the body, the grave digger said.More exhumations were being carried out here Saturday. Two of these are being done at Bazipora (Ajas) village, 42 km from here in Baramulla district and one at Kangan town, 30 km north of Srinagar city.It is believed that innocent civilians, who were framed as foreign guerrillas and subsequently murdered, have been buried at all these places by the police personnel who now face murder charges.One assistant sub-inspector of police and a selection grade constable have already been arrested so far.