In an interesting turn of events, the Jammu and Kashmir government informed the Supreme Court that Major Aditya Kumar’s name was not mentioned in the FIR filed against Army personnel involved in the Shopian firing.
In January, three civilians were killed when Army personnel fired at a stone-pelting mob in Shopian district of Jammu and Kashmir, prompting Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti to order an inquiry into the incident.
J&K police had earlier registered the FIR against Major Aditya Kumar under section 307 of the Ranvir Penal Code (RPC) for his alleged involvement in the Shopian firing incident case in the state.
The Supreme Court today restrained the Jammu and Kashmir government from initiating any investigation against Major Aditya Kumar till April 24.
The apex court was listening to the plea of Lt Col (retd) Karamveer Singh’s plea seeking to quash the FIR against his son Major Aditya.
Singh had said in his petition that his son, a major in 10 Garhwal Rifles, was “wrongly and arbitrarily” named in the FIR as the incident relates to an Army convoy that was on bona fide military duty in an area under AFSPA and was isolated by an “unruly and deranged” mob pelting stones, causing damage to military vehicles.
“Major Aditya is an army officer and cannot be treated like ordinary criminals by the J&K police,” said the bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said.
However, the bench stated that since Major Aditya’s name is mentioned in the narrative of the FIR, he could be roped in at any time.
Bringing out a serving officer’s name without consulting the Central Government was a huge blunder on the part of State Government and there had been previous instances when the apex court has prohibited to register even a complaint against a serving officer.
Moreover, many people believe that filing of the FIR against Major Aditya Kumar will hurt the Army’s morale in fighting terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir.