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SC restrains J&K Police from acting on FIR against Army personnel

12 February 2018

The petition was mentioned before a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud which said it would hear it on February 12.

In his plea, Major Kumar's father Karamveer Singh, also a former high-ranking Indian Army officer, told the top court a police case against serving Armymen would have a "numbing effect" on the morale of soldiers operating against all odds in "inhospitable terrain" for the country. Besides seeking Venugopal's assistance in dealing with the matter, the bench asked the state government to file its response to the plea within two weeks. "There is an operation going on now", senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi and advocate Aishwarya Bhati informed the court in behalf of Lt. Col. Karamveer Singh.

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In his petition, Lt. Colonel Singh states that the FIR falsely implicates his son, who was not present at the place of the incident.

As the unruly behaviour of the "unlawful assembly" reached peak and when they got hold of a Junior Commissioned Officer and were in the process of lynching him to death, warning shots were fired fire to disperse the violent mob and protect public property, it submitted.

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"The decision to lodge an FIR against a soldier was totally uncalled for".

The manner in which the lodging of the FIR was portrayed and projected by the political leadership and the administration reflected the hostile atmosphere in the state, he said.

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The organisation said that proper or fair investigations were a rarity for the armed forces in the state, and hence it was not surprising that impunity for the armed forces in Jammu and Kashmir was "entrenched". According to the Army's narrative, the force's convoy was attacked by a group of stone pelters and its personnel resorted to firing to save themselves, said a PTI report. "A legitimate method of removing any obstacle or impediment for completing the authorised task can be defined as a part of charter of duty", it said.

SC restrains J&K Police from acting on FIR against Army personnel