Will Gool probe be different from 54 ordered since 2009?

Inquiry would be taken to logical conclusion: Govt

ABID BASHIR

Srinagar, July 21: With Kashmir once again on the edge following the killing of four unarmed protestors at Gool in Ramban district, the inquiry ordered by the government is once again under question. Will the probe ordered by the National Conference-Congress coalition government headed by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah be different from previous investigations?
The riddle assumes significance given the fact that Gool incident has occurred at a time when all major political parties in JK were already in the poll-mode. According to the records maintained by the JK Coalition of Civil Society (CCS) - an independent human rights body - 54 probes were ordered by the present dispensation since Omar took reigns of the state in January 2009.
“Not a single person has been indicted or prosecuted in any of the cases so far. The government has created serious credibility crisis for itself by confining probes to just investigations only. That way, we have lost faith in investigations ordered by the government,” said CCS Coordinator Khurram Pervez. “We believe investigations by some international agency are only credible.”
Talking to Greater Kashmir, Minister of State for Home Sajad Ahmad Kichloo said the government has appointed Divisional Commissioner Jammu as inquiry officer for investigating Gool incident. “We have given him 30 days time for completing the probe. We hope, truth will come to fore once the inquiry is completed,” he said. Kichloo said at the same time, Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde has also ordered a probe into the Gool incident that is being conducted by ADG BSF.  Chief Minister Omar Abdullah’s Political Secretary, Tanvir Sadiq said they are quite hopeful that the investigation would be taken to the logical conclusion. “Nobody is above law. We have two investigations going on. There is no reason to believe that guilty won’t be brought to book. It is just a matter of time that people will see justice delivered,” he said.
Senior NC leader and MP, Dr Mehboob Beg said there is already a huge credibility crisis in JK. “We have to complete the probe into the Gool incident and make it different from the previous probes to restore some confidence among the people,” he said and added; “This inquiry should set an example and a message should go to forces that no more now. This is a test for Government of India as well, as they are conducting a separate probe into the incident.” Dr Beg admitted that incidents like Sumbal, Bandipora, Gool, Ramban would have direct bearing on the upcoming elections.
“Unfortunately, yes. These incidents would make us more accountable before the public. We can’t wish it away. The requests made by the Chief Minister Omar Abdullah to forces have fallen to deaf ears. We have to face the people. What answers will we give them, if they ask us about these incidents,” Dr Beg said. 
In his guarded response, State Congress Chief, Prof Saifuddin Soz said people have a right to know what has happened to past inquiries, findings and reports. “What action has been taken so far, people must be told. Similarly, people must be informed about the progress in Gool inquiry as they have a right to know,” he said. Senior PDP leader and MLA Bandipora, Nizamudin Bhat said the repeated mistakes mean a blunder. “The government has not been able to correct their mistakes. No inquiry will help end miseries of people as government lacks commitment towards upholding honor and dignity of the people. The only thing which can end the sufferings of people is change and it is the people that would bring that change,” Bhat said.
Professor Gul Muhammad Wani, who heads Institute of Kashmir Studies at Kashmir University, said the incidents like Sumbal, Bandipora and Gool have happened at a very delicate time. “Peoples anger and frustration is increasing at a time when challenges are tremendous in and outside Kashmir. As far as the inquiry is concerned, Government should lend some credibility to probes by including the civil society members of the area where incident has happened,” Wani said.
“If we go by the public perception, Gool inquiry won’t yield anything as has been the case in the past.” He said if entry in 2014 would be made with incidents like Gool that has affected Muslims across JK and with a failure to curb the vested interests; there will be nothing to learn in the election year.

Lastupdate on : Sun, 21 Jul 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 21 Jul 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 22 Jul 2013 00:00:00 IST




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