Papers prepared for Major Avtar’s extradition: Omar
Jaleel Andrabi Murder Case
Srinagar, Mar 3: Breaking his silence on the extradition of Major Avtar Singh from USA, chief minister, Omar Abdullah, has said that “papers are prepared and police is pursuing his extradition”.
Omar was asked by one of his follower on micro-blogging site Tweeter, what was the state government’s stand on extradition of Avtar Singh. To this, the chief minister responded that extradition papers are prepared and police is pursuing the case.
Singh, a former Army Major, is the prime accused in the kidnapping and killing of lawyer and prominent human rights activist Jaleel Andrabi in 1996.
Singh, who was arrested on February 21 in California (USA) in a domestic violence case and later released on bail, is wanted in five murder cases including Jaleel’s case here.
Reportedly, California police discovered that Singh was wanted on an Interpol alert, but when they contacted the police agency and the US State Department, they were told it was not necessary to hold him.
The FIR in the Jaleel Andrabi custodial killing case in 1996 is pending in the court of CJM for the past more than nine years.
Interpol has recommended provisional arrest and extradition request for Avtar be forwarded to its Washington office and US Department of Justice. Following which a local court here had directed Inspector General of Police, Crime in J&K, to forward requisite documents.
The delay in the disposal of the case is mainly due to non-arrest of Major Avtar.
Jaleel’s counsel Mir Hafizullah said the abnormal delay coupled with inherent defects in the investigation suggest that the Government of India was not interested in pursuing the extradition case. He said government was never interested in Singh’s extradition. “If India would have been sincere, they would have got Avtar Singh extradited years ago,” he said.
Disappeared on March 8, 1996, Jaleel’s mutilated body was found 19 days later.
In April, 1997, the Special Investigation Team presented its initial findings to the High Court. The SIT said that Major Avtar Singh from the 103rd Unit of the Territorial Army and other soldiers were responsible for the abduction and killing of Jaleel. The SIT was unable to arrest Major Avtar Singh as they could not find him.
However, Singh reportedly refuted his involvement in the killing before the California police. He told an American News Agency that “he is no killer -- just a scapegoat who has been under extreme stress since he fled his native country.”
Lastupdate on : Thu, 3 Mar 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 3 Mar 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 4 Mar 2011 00:00:00 IST
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