Indian army captain charged with murdering three men in Kashmir Valley


New Delhi – An army captain in the Indian territory of Jammu and Kashmir has been charged with murder, kidnapping and criminal conspiracy following the shooting deaths of three Kashmiri men.

The men – labourers Abrar Ahmad Khan, Imtiyaz Ahmad and Abrar Ahmad Yousuf, who had left their homes to look for work – were killed in an army operation in July. Local police recovered pistols and live cartridges from the scene, and a special investigations unit said the army had initially portrayed the victims as “militants”.

In a statement on Sunday, police accused Captain Bhoopendra Singh and one other of having kidnapped the men, saying they had staged the murders as a fake military encounter and “planted illegally acquired weapons and material on their dead bodies after stripping them of their identities and tagged them as hardcore terrorists.”

Police also said Singh had “deliberately and purposefully” chosen not to follow standard operating procedures in Kashmir.

The Indian Army has not indicated whether the captain will be tried under civilian jurisdiction or in a military court. Under an emergency law enacted in Jammu and Kashmir since 1990, Indian army soldiers cannot be tried in civilian courts under ordinary jurisdiction without the permission of the federal government.

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