Civilians in Kashmir Allege Torture, Army Denies It: BBC Report

A BBC report shows civilians in Kashmir claiming that they have been tortured by security forces in the state.

2 min read
Hindi Female

On Thursday, 29 August, BBC published a report that quotes civilians in Kashmir claiming they have been tortured by security forces in the state.

According to the report, “The BBC heard from several villagers who said they were beaten with sticks and cables, and given electric shocks. Residents in several villages showed me injuries. But the BBC was not able to verify the allegations with officials.”

Responding to the claims made by the civilians, the Indian Army has called the allegations "baseless and unsubstantiated" and said they have "not manhandled any civilians as alleged."

“No specific allegations of this nature have been brought to our notice. These allegations are likely to have been motivated by inimical elements. There have been no injuries or casualties due to countermeasures undertaken by the army.”
Army spokesperson Col Aman Anand to BBC

BBC correspondent Sameer Hashmi writes about two brothers who alleged that they had been woken up and taken to an outside area where nearly a dozen other men from the village had been assembled. One of the brothers told the reporter, “They beat us up. We were asking them: 'What have we done? You can ask the villagers if we are lying, if we have done anything wrong?' But they didn't want to hear anything, they didn't say anything, they just kept beating us."

“They beat every part of my body. They kicked us, beat us with sticks, gave us electric shocks, beat us with cables. They hit us on the back of the legs. When we fainted they gave us electric shocks to bring us back. When they hit us with sticks and we screamed, they sealed our mouth with mud.”
Kashmiri civilian to BBC

Another villager, a young man was quoted as saying, "They beat me mercilessly with rods and sticks, for almost two hours. Whenever I fell unconscious, they gave me shocks to revive [me]. If they do it to me again, I am willing to do anything, I will pick up the gun. I can't bear this every day."


‘Authorities Should Initiate Independent Investigation’

Reacting to the BBC report, Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia director for Human Rights Watch, tweeted that Indian authorities should initiate an independent investigation.

Certain Twitter users chose to term the BBC’s report “propaganda.”

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