Court directs government to appoint PP in Kunanposhpora rape case
A local court in the frontier district of Kupwara has directedJammu and Kashmir government to appoint Special Public Prosecutor (SPP) within ten days. In Kunanposhpora alleged mass rape case of 1991.
Taking serious note of appointment of PP Ghulam Mohammad Shah as standing counsel by the central government for defending Army personnel accused in the mass rape case, the Principal Sessions Judge, Kupwara, directed state government to appoint SPP within ten days.
The court directions came after the families of victims informed that PP Shah has been appointed by Centre as its standing counsel.
Advocate Parvez Imroz, representing victims in the court, argued that it is an example of professional misconduct, lack of integrity and is in violation of the terms of engagement of Central Government Standing Counsel which states that a standing counsel cannot appear in any case against Union Government.
Advocate Imroz said it was very unbecoming on part of public prosecutor to accept the new position as standing counsel for the union Government without resigning as PP.
Advocate Imroz, said for the past 22 years, the victims are waiting for justice and now the Army has been resorting to dillydallying tactics. He said five of the victims have already died.
At least 40 women were allegedly raped by 4 Rajputana Rifles personnel during the intervening night of February 23/24 in 1991 in the twin villages of Kunan and Poshpora in the frontier district of Kupwara.
The Army had filed a revision petition in the court challenging the June 18 order of the court of Judicial Magistrate, Kupwara, which directed police to reinvestigate the case and conduct test identification parade of the Army personnel allegedly involved in the case.
The State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) in October 2011 has recommended to the state government to reopen the case and constitute a Special Investigation Team (SIT) headed by an officer not below the rank of Superintendent of Police to reinvestigate it.
(Posted on 06-04-2014)