Army gives clean chit to officer who tied civilian to jeep

Army gives clean chit to officer who tied civilian to jeep
The army officer, who had tied a Kashmir youth to a jeep as “human shield” against stone pelters, has been given a clean chit by the Court of Inquiry (CoI), sources told Deccan Herald.

They said no action was recommended against the major from 53-Rashtriya Rifles battalion by the CoI and he was given a clean chit.  “Not disciplinary action was recommended against the officer and he was congratulated for his acumen and presence of mind to avoid civilian casualties,” sources revealed.

The army had ordered a CoI on April 20 against the Major who tied Farooq Ahmad Dar of Chill Bras area in Khansahib segment of Budgam district in front of his jeep to “safeguard” paramilitary forces and polling staff from stone-pelters. The CoI had been given one month's time to complete the probe.

Earlier, the police had registered an FIR against unnamed army personnel on April 17 for tying Dar with a jeep on April 13, the day re-poll was held in 38-polling booths of Srinagar Lok Sabha seat. According to the police investigation, Dar was used as a human shield under threat and was kept under wrongful confinement by the Army.

A video of the incident was uploaded by former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on his Twitter profile, generating massive outrage and condemnation from all quarters including some senior army officers.

Lt General (Rtd) Harcharanjit Singh Panag, former General Officer Commanding-in-chief, Northern Command had said the image of tying a youth to an Army jeep would haunt his force and the nation for a long time. “Image of a ‘stone pelter’ tied in front of a jeep as a ‘human shield’, will 4 (for) ever haunt the Indian Army & the nation,” Lt Gen H S Panag wrote on the twitter. “When the state starts looking like a mirror image of the terrorists, it spells ominous portents!”
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