18th July Amshipora, Shopian Encounter: High level court enquiry in progress, Says army

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Srinagar,18 August: Army on Tuesday said that a high level court enquiry is in progress regarding encounter on 18th July in Amshipora area of South Kashmir’s Shopian district.

In a statement to media, the army said that as intimated on 11 Aug 2020, a high level Court of Inquiry into Operation Amshipora , Shopian on 18 Jul 2020 is under progress.

“Statements of key witnesses are being recorded and progress is being monitored closely. Additional civil witnesses are being asked to depose before the Court of Inquiry. Concurrently, DNA samples have been collected from Rajouri under the aegis of JKP and sent for matching with the militants killed on 18 Jul 2020,” the statement reads.

Three unidentified “militants” were killed in the encounter whose pictures went viral on social media after his three families from Rajouri district claimed that slain were not militants their wards, who had gone to Shopian to work as laborers to earn a living.

On August 11, the army had stated that it had taken note of the social media reports where netizens had termed the encounter as a fake and maintained that “investigation into the matter was ordered.”

The army spokesperson further said that, Indian Army is committed to ethical conduct of all Counter militant operations.

“Cases where doubts are raised are investigated under due process as per the law of the land. Since the case is under investigation , further details will be shared periodically , as appropriate without affecting due legal process”, the statement added.

A special team from Jammu and Kashmir Police had visited Rajouri recently and collected the samples of families of the slain trio. The samples were sent to Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) for cross matching the reports of which are expected by September 5.  The families have been demanding an independent probe, a demand supported by the Amnesty International and other civil society group.

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