“We were engrossed in merry-making of Eid. A pall of gloom descended when one Major Punia of 17 Jat Regiment and two surrendered militants Bashir Ahmad alias Bashir Langoo and Khaliq Rai from Lethpora Pampore barged into our house at 10.00 PM on the intervening night of Feb 1 and 2, 1998 and dragged my husband Advocate Ghulam Mohi-ud-din Regoo to one of the rooms of our house.

By Assabah Khan

From Srinagar

Massoda Parveen from Chandhara Pampore sits in a quiet room where she is waiting for justice since February 2, 1998 at the hands of Indian state for the poignant death of her husband whose body was cut into pieces by an axe by the members of Special Task Force, a wing of J&K police which is used to counter ‘Civilian Unrest’ in Kashmir Valley.

Masooda says, “It was the third day of Eid-ul-Fitr in February, 1998. My husband, his three sisters and I were sitting in the kitchen of our residence in Chandhara Pampore.

“We were engrossed in merry-making of Eid. A pall of gloom descended when one Major Punia of 17 Jat Regiment and two surrendered militants Bashir Ahmad alias Bashir Langoo and Khaliq Rai from Lethpora Pampore barged into our house at 10.00 PM on the intervening night of Feb 1 and 2, 1998 and dragged my husband Advocate Ghulam Mohi-ud-din Regoo to one of the rooms of our house. All four of us were aghast and I could hear the screams of my husband. After a while they left along with my husband. They had brought an axe with them. We checked the rooms they were full of blood which was probably oozing out of my husband’s wounds.”

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“I lodged an FIR next day Vide No: 98PC/0/98/HT/GS in the Police Station of Chandhara Pampore and demanded my husband’s whrer abouts. In the evening of Feb 2, 1998, I was handed over pieces of the body of my husband. The then ASI was Tahir Kausar and Special Task Force SHO was S M Jindra. Superintendent of Police (SP) was Mushtaq Sadiq and Member Legislative Assembly (MLA) was Mushtaq Kuchey.

The then Divisional Commisioner Kashmir Masood Samoon promised a job to the wife of deceased Mohiu-d-ud-din Regoo under public pressure and a cash of Rs 50,000. The residents of Pampore blocked the roads and called for a strike when my husband’s body pieces were handed over.
“To my utter surprise police lodged in the FIR that my husband Advocate Ghulam Mohi-ud-din Regoo who was also a saffron businessman as well, was a militant whose body was recovered from Ustarvan, jungle area of Pampore while diffusing an IED (Improvised Explosive Device),” she said.

Masooda said, “I wrote to the then Prime Minister of India Atal Bihari Vajpayee and L K Advani about the file of my husband. I was trying to seek clarification when did my husband crossed the Line of Control and the militant activities which he had taken part? Till date I have not received any reply. Also why government of India did not bring any IED experts to diffuse the mine? How was my husband, who as per government’s version was an ill-trained, an anti-national person.”

“I filed a case in the Supreme court of India bearing Registration No: Writ Petition (Civil) 275 of 1999 titled Masooda Parveen versus Union of India. The petition was rejected by Supreme Court of India in a judgement delivered on May 2, 2007.”

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The rejection of Masooda Parveen’s case is a strong signal to Kashmiri community that they should not seek justice from Indian courts. Also it would have been equivalent to admitting torture of civilians of Kashmir at the hands of Indian state. The government of India is signatory to UN Convention on torture but has not ratified it so far.

Masooda Parveen wants to make a special mention and express strong gratitude in her story about President Bar Association Kashmir Mian Abdul Qayoom helped her son Farkhand Murtaza to get a passport so that he could pursue his education MSc Marketing in Hudders University in London. Indian authorities were hell bent not to give passport to my son. It was Mian Qayoom who made tireless efforts for six months continuously and did not accept even a single penny from us to help my son get his passport. His whole future would have been destroyed.
Masooda said, “I don’t want to paint black and white image of Indians. There are lawyers like Shamoona from Supreme Court of India who helped me file my case in United Nations. To me she seems an angel.”
“I am harassed by National Conference activists in my area. From Chandhara I had to shift to Pampore Town. They are directing local people to create all sorts of hurdles in my day to day life. I want to plead my case in Geneva UN myself but they are the ones who are directing Delhi not to issue me passport. I applied for passport twice but my application has been rejected twice.”

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“My hope in life are my sons Sakib Murtaza, who is topper and gold Medalist in Forestry Division of Wadura Sopore and Farkhand Mohi-ud-din. We as a family will never give up our struggle of justice against Indian state. I am fighting it for last 13 years so that no other woman’s husband is picked up by Indian forces or STF and later labeled as a militant. No other woman is handed over pieces of her husband’s body and she is left all alone to be harassed by workers of National Conference.”

Assabah Khan has done her  Post Graduation in Mass Communication & Journalism holds Diploma in creative writing in English, Professional Development studies in Peace and Conflict Resolution and Certificate in Human Rights.

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