Days after the army ended the synopsis of proof in an alleged counterfeit encounter in Shopian on July 18 that left three civilians dead, the Jammu and Kashmir police has registered a charge sheet in court against three persons including an army captain.
The charge sheet has disclosed how the three victims were brought in a pre-organized vehicle by the Army captain and his two associates. They were brought to a location near an orchard and were driven to walk ahead being shot dead. The series of circumstances that have been pieced together by the investigators’ facts the shocking story of the “staged” encounter. According to the charge sheet, Army captain Bhoopendra Singh nicknamed Major Basheer Khan allegedly first kidnaped the youths with the support of his two abettors.
They then murdered them and tilled illegally obtained weapons and material on their bodies. The three men were anointed as “hard-core terrorists” by the Army captain. They were identified as Ibrar Ahmed (16), Imtiyaz Ahmed (25), and Ibrar Ahmed (20), all inhabitants of the Rajouri area of J&K. In the charge sheet, the Army captain and the two civilian accomplices have been charged with creating the encounter. They also have been blamed for ruining proof and “purposefully casting false information” as part of criminal intrigue. The justification as per the probe was to hold a prize money “earmarked for genuine information”.
As per the probes on July 17, a night before the “encounter”, the Army officer encountered his two civilian abettors Tabish Nazir Malik and Basheer Ahmed Lone at the Army camp in the Reshnagri spot. That day they reached the camp in a vehicle (JK22B3365) that belonged to Lone. The investigation has also disclosed that the Army officer was in contact with these two for quite some term.
From the Army camp, the three soldiers, departed in a different car which was pre-arranged by the official. The men from the 62 RR positioned the vehicle carrying the registration number DL8CU0649 from a local in the region around 6:30 pm on July 17. The three men including the Army officer and the two civilian abettors took this vehicle and kidnaped the three victims from their rented housing in the Chowgam area at night, hours after the three victims reached from their residences in Rajouri to discover a job in Shopian.
“white color private car (Maruti Suzuki A Star) bearing registration no DL8CU 0649, prior arranged by the accused Captain Bhoopendra along with incriminating material loaded in it, to Chowgam Shopian, from where they abducted three persons from their rented accommodation in a residential house using the same car and in it transported them to the scene of occurrence at Amshipora while also traveling a distance on foot,” said the charge sheet filed in the case.
According to the inquiry , after reaching the location, the Captain fired the three men. The charged personnel then grew the “illegally acquired illegal weapons and material on their dead bodies and tried to label them as hardcore terrorists”. The “incriminating material” which the Army initially asserted was found on the three dead, included two pistols with two magazines and four empty pistol cartridges, 15 live cartridges, and 15 empty cartridges of an AK series weapon.
Police have arrested two accomplices of the Army captain on September 28, 2020, after over two months since the faked encounter of the Rajouri locals. As per facts provided to the court, the Army officer is “still to be captured for procedures under AFSPA (Armed Forces Special Powers Act) and the Army Act, whereas embargo is also needed to be acquired for establishing prosecution against him”.It also said that the CO of 62 RR has “intimated that accused Captain Bhoopendra Singh @ Major has been put under closed arrest w.e.f 15 Aug 2020 who was produced before SIT and questioned and IR (interrogation report) was documented.”
In a report given last week, the Army had said, “The process of documenting the ‘summary of evidence’ has been conducted. The same is being reviewed by the concerned officers in consultation with legal consultants for moving further. Indian Army is executed to the moral conduct of operations. Further points will be transferred in a way so as not to favor the proceedings under Army Law”.
On July 18, this year, the three laborers were shot dead in the fake encounter at Amshipora of Shopian. Their images went viral on social media after which the three families from Rajouri district of Jammu argued that the dead were their relative who had traveled to Shopian to work as laborers.
As the probes started, police executed the DNA profiling of the bodies, the samples of which were approximated with the three Rajouri families on September 25, which confirmed that they were not militants but were laborers who were making a living in Amshipora. The killed trio was recognized as Abrar Ahmed (25), Imtiyaz Ahmed (20), and Mohammed Ibrar (16). On October 3, after around 70 days, the bodies of three laborers were disinterred and brought to Rajouri for last burial by the families.