Family's pride: Sisters embrace
death to save honour
GK News Service
Srinagar, May 30: A year after the incident in which
special police officers (SPOs) reportedly killed five
and seriously injured four members of a family, the
residents of Dena in Doda district remember the brave
daughters of their village who embraced death by
attacking the special police officers (SPOs) who had
come to assault their chastity.
On the intervening night of April 9-10, 2002, some
SPOs entered into the house of Noor Din s/o Baba
Gujjar of Dena and tried to assault the women.
At that time male members of the family were in their
fields in neighbouring village Silva.
Finding their honour in danger, Haleema Bano (25) and
Beena Bano (26), wielded axes to defend themselves.
Enraged by the unexpected resistance, the SPOs fired
volleys of bullets on them killing them on the spot.
"They did not stop there," said Gazi Muhammad, their
brother in law. "They then tried to kill everyone who
came in their way," he said, adding Zaffar Hussain (8)
s/o late Muhammad Ibrahim, Muhammad Salim (10) and
Shabir Ahmad (8), s/o Altaf Din Gujjar were gunned
down. They also shot at Fatima Bano (10) d/o Gazi
Muhammad, Arsha Bano (5) d/o late Muhammad Ibrahim
Gujjar, Gulshana (3) d/o Muhammad Ibrahim Gujjar,
Jameela (2) d/o Altaf Din Gujjar. They received
serious injuries but survived to tell the terrible
Gazi said the intention of the killers was to kill
every member of the family to destroy evidence.
However, the survivors later identified them. Despite
identification of the killers, according to Gazi, the
police let five of them off and booked only two.
The State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) in its report
has also identified the two SPOs. Quoting FIR 31/2002
u/s 302/307 RPC, 7/272 registered at police station
Gandoh, SHRC in its report 2002/114 has identified two
accused as Rajinder Singh (No 2509) s/o Munshi Ram of
Dhar Sarore Kishtwar, Subhash Chander (No 611/SPO) s/o
Chakar Lal of Parashola Doda.
The SHRC also directed the concerned deputy
commissioner to release ex-gratia relief in their
favour. DC Doda in a letter vide 2064/IR/D dated
November 25, 2002, wrote to divisional commissioner
Jammu that two SPOs of STF post Haryana tehsil Thathri
killed five persons of a family and asked for his
approval for grant of ex-gratia relief in favour of
the family in accordance with the directions of SHRC.
However, hitherto no grant has been issued in favour
of the family.
The family had to face innumerable hardships. Exactly
the year before the massacre by SPOs, militants had
killed Beena Bano's husband Muhammad Ibrahim. "The
militant who had killed my brother Ibrahim on charges
of being an informer later surrendered," said Gazi
Muhammad. "After killing Ibrahim, the militants didn't
even hand over his body to us," he added.
"I have lost half of my family members, my grandsons,
my son. But I don't have any regrets," said aged Noor
Din. "Whenever I think about these tragedies my only
consolation is sheer courage of my daughter-in-laws
who embraced death to save their honour," she said,
tears rolling down her wrinkled cheeks.
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