The Peninsula / January 17 2006 / (AFP)
SRINAGAR: Angry protesters in a Kashmir village are refusing to bury the body of a Muslim youth they claim was tortured to death by soldiers until those responsible are punished, police said yesterday. Villagers had been staging noisy anti-Indian demonstrations in Sumbhal village, some 40km north of Srinagar, a police official said.
Abdul Majid and another youth, Fayaz Bhat, were detained by soldiers on Saturday and, according to villagers, severely tortured. They were later handed over to police in semi-conscious condition and taken to hospital in Srinagar, where Majid died on Sunday. "(Villagers) are demanding action against soldiers involved in the torture," a police officer said, adding that a case against the army had been filed by police. He said senior police and civil officials were trying to placate the agitated villagers.
The army said it was investigating the claims. "The army has taken serious note of the incident and ordered an inquiry into the incident," Indian army spokesman Colonel Hemant Juneja said. "The guilty will be punished."