Police begin process to take back cases against stone-throwers : The Tribune India

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Police begin process to take back cases against stone-throwers

SRINAGAR:The Jammu and Kashmir police have initiated the process of withdrawing cases against 634 stone-throwers, out of the several thousand who have been charged with the crime during the past eight years, following the state’s government amnesty order.

Police begin process to take back cases against stone-throwers


Tribune News Service

Srinagar, July 8

The Jammu and Kashmir police have initiated the process of withdrawing cases against 634 stone-throwers, out of the several thousand who have been charged with the crime during the past eight years, following the state’s government amnesty order.

The state government had earlier this week approved amnesty to 634 persons facing charges of stone-throwing following the Home Department’s approval to withdraw 104 cases dating from 2008 to 2009. The amnesty was granted on Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s direction.

A senior police official, who is in charge of a district, said an order had been issued to initiate the process of withdrawal of the select cases.

Additional Advocate General Riyaz Khan said the process of amnesty would include withdrawal of FIRs following which the trial courts would be informed. “The government will take back the FIRs and once the case is withdrawn, the arrested persons will be released. And if there is a trial going on, the courts will close the case,” Khan said.

It is unlikely that any of the undertrials, who have been given amnesty, will still be in custody since the stone-throwing offence is bailable and the cases have been filed seven or eight years ago.

A Srinagar resident, who was booked for stone-throwing in 2010 and has been undergoing trial since then, said the amnesty “will be a huge relief”. “If this happens, it will be a huge relief especially for my family. Going through a trial is not easy. The time, effort and money spent are just too much,” said the undertrial, not covered under the current amnesty.

The amnesty, however, has made little impact on the ground as incidents of stone-throwing have continued. Hundreds of youth clashed with the police and paramilitary forces on Eid-ul-Fitr, a day after the amnesty was announced, in several towns of the region.

Several thousand people have been booked for stone-throwing in the past eight years, most of them in 2010 when the Kashmir region was paralysed for an entire summer and 120 civilians died in police and paramilitary firing.

Nearly 5,000 protesters were booked under different sections for stone-throwing during the 2010 summer agitation while 1,325 persons, including 95 minors, were arrested during 2013 when Kashmir witnessed widespread protests following the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru. 

The issue of amnesty to the stone-throwers was part of the PDP’s election campaign and it had roped in many of them with a promise to revoke cases against them.

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