Kashmir: Family approaches court to prove their son’s death 

Osaib’s father with Altaf Ahmad Marazi's photo.

Auqib Javeed, Twocircle.Net

Srinagar: On August 05, few hours after Modi government’s decision to nullify Article 370 and divide Jammu & Kashmir into two Union territories, Kashmir witnessed its first causality a 17-year-old boy named Osaib Altaf, from Palpora locality of Srinagar city. 

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As the Internet and mobile services were shut down, the local and other media houses couldn’t gather the details on ground, so the state decided not to acknowledge his death, according to the family.  

According to his family Osaib was chased by Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and Jammu and Kashmir Police (JKP) personnel in Srinagar’s Parimpora area few miles from his home. 

“Eyewitnesses told me that he was cornered by forces, closing in on him from two sides and then his head was smashed with gun butts after that he felt in River Jhelum and got drowned,” says Altaf Ahmad Marazi, Osaib’s father. 

Over five months have passed since then but the family is still struggling to prove that their son is dead and the government agencies are responsible for it. The Jammu and Kashmir categorically refused to accept the any such death has occurred thus refused to register First Information report (FIR).

The Shri Maharaja Hari Singh Hospital (SMHS) where the deceased was taken didn’t issues death certificate to the family as the authorities are seeking an FIR copy that police refused to register.

The family has now moved the Jammu and Kashmir High Court, seeking an FIR and a police investigation on their kin’s death. 

“First of all I want to prove that my son is dead and for that I have approached the court. I want to get an FIR registered in the concerned police station and that can be done only if the court directs,” says Altaf, a taxi driver.

Altaf Ahmad Marazi’s photo

Altaf says he and his family keep doing rounds to the court since August to seek an FIR. 

In its initial report submitted to the court on 27th of October, the police station Parimpora asserted that they don’t have any information regarding the death of Osaib Altaf, says Advocate Shah Faisal who is helping the family with this case. 

Faisal argued in the court that police is dodging the court and have issued confusing reports.

Faisal says, in the next hearing the court sought in-person appearance of concerned police officer and asked him to submit a fresh report regarding the case. In their 2nd report the police accept that they have fished out a body but the area doesn’t fall under their jurisdiction. According to the police report submitted before the court that Senior Superintendent of Police has requested District Magistrate Srinagar for initiation of inquest proceedings. 

But the family says and the locals say that the area falls under the same police station.

Who is in the grave?

The family alleges police even fired on the funeral prayers of their son where many people got injured.

“One of our neighbour was hit by bullet in his arm another was hit by bullet in throat, still police is saying no death occurred,” says Altaf.

“Then who is in the grave? Then where is my son? It’s Jammu and Kashmir police that killed Osaib and now they refuse to acknowledge it,” says Altaf.

Osaib was just a Class XI student and loved to play cricket. His father says he didn’t know anything about this whole Article 370 issue. 

“He was kid, who just knew nothing about the conflict. And I must say you don’t get justice in Kashmir and when there is no Justice there will be no peace,” he adds. 

In its complaint filed before the court, a copy of which lies with TwoCircles.net, the council argues that the deceased was beaten ruthlessly by the Indian government CRPF security forces on 5th of August at 1:30 PM, while playing a footfall match near Parimpora foot bridge.

The complaint further says the deceased was given a severe blow on the back of his head with gun butt by the forces as a result of which he fell half-unconscious, ran towards river Jehlum in order to hide himself in the bushes at the bank of the river. 

“After that some security personnel approached towards river and gave a strong blow with stick to the hand of deceased as a result of which he fell into the river, got drowned and consequently died on the same day,” Faisal writes in the complaint.

It further reads that the father of the deceased went to two police stations – Police Station Parimpora and Police Station Safakadal for registration of FIR in the death of the son but the concerned officers at the two police stations refused to lodge an FIR on the pretext that the area where the occurrence took place doesn’t fall within their respective jurisdictions. 

The court has listed the next hearing on February 3th 2020.