JKLF chief, associates booked for 'attempt to murder'

JKLF chief, associates booked for 'attempt to murder'

All of them were part of Monday’s attempted protest march towards Badami Bagh.

A court here Wednesday sent chairman of Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front, Yasin Malik to four days remand after police brought charges of attempt to murder against him and his associates, evoking strong resentment from the pro-independence group and the Bar Association. 

Besides section 307 of RPC (attempt to murder), police slapped several other charges on the JKLF chief and seven of his associates after they was detained following a symbolic protest Malik led to march towards the Badami Bagh military headquarters in Srinagar on Monday.

The protest march was called by the Joint Resistance Leadership – of which Malik is a part besides Syed Ali Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq – against killing of seven civilians by soldiers after a gun battle in Pulwama last weekend. 

According to an First Information Report (FIR), a copy of which is with the Greater Kashmir, the JKLF chief and seven of its other leaders, including Mushtaq Ajmal, Muhammad Hanif Dar, Imtiyaz Ahmad Dar, Imtiyaz Ahmad Ganie, Shakir Ahmad Ahangar, Fayaz Ahmad and Basharat Ahmad, have been booked under sections 307, ,336, 353, 353, 427, 148, 147, 147 and 152 of RPC.

All of them were part of Monday’s attempted protest march towards Badami Bagh.

Malik was leading the symbolic protest by his group and scores of protestors including women and youth who wore shrouds with “Indian army kills us all” painted over.  

Police foiled the protest and fired tear gas to the marchers back before taking Malik into custody. 

On Wednesday, the JKLF chief was presented in the court of Third Munsif where his lawyer Advocate Bashir Sidiq argued that it was unfortunate a leader of “such a huge stature” was slapped with a charge like attempt to murder police officers.

“The JKLF chief has been following non-violent means of protest since past 24 years. He has been even choosing the hunger strike as a means to register his protest. Slapping him with the charges like attempt to murder is a sheer injustice,” Advocate Sidiq said, who appeared in defense of Malik on behalf of the Bar Association. 

“Police must come up with a proof to support its charges of attempt to murder against the JKLF chief and his associates.”

A JKLF spokesman said its chief informed the court that “police officers almost heckled him (during the protest) and there were many videos available as evidence.”

“Malik also told the court that those who assaulted peaceful protesters and almost strangulated me to death have charged us with attempt to murder which can only be termed as travesty of the law,” Malik told the court, according to the Front spokesman. 

“Police then arrested us and booked us under sections 107 and 151 but as soon magistrate ordered our release on personal bond, police re-arrested and booked us under section 307.” 

Malik’s counsel stated that the JKLF chief and all his seven associates were sent to four-day police remand. 

Meanwhile, High Court Bar Association strongly condemned the attempt to murder charges against the JKLF chief and its other