Azad orders probe into Padroo’s killing

"I am a carpenter. Farooq (Constable Farooq) knows. Please don't kill me," Abdul Rehman Padroo shrieked in fear, his hands folded. "Don't listen to him. He is a dreaded Pakistani terrorist," shouted Deputy Superintendent of Police Bahadur Ram. Then Padroo was shot.

This is how a policeman with Special Operations Group, Ganderbal, described to investigators the encounter in which a civilian was killed after allegedly being dubbed a militant.

In their first progress report after the expose, investigators from the Jammu and Kashmir Police have termed the case as "abduction and murder". They are now waiting for a forensic team from Chandigarh to arrive tomorrow and exhume the body for a DNA test.

Meanwhile, Chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has announced a judicial probe withing three months by a serving or retired High Court judge after Opposition National Conference raised the issue of fake encounters in the Legislative Assembly today. The J-K Police has already constituted a special investigating team led by a Superintendent of Police.

The progress report by the investigating team reveals that "the whole conspiracy of abduction and murder of Abdul Rehman Padroo" was unveiled after the interrogation of Assistant Sub Inspector Farooq Ahmad Guddu and Constable Farooq Ahmad, both in police custody.

The questioning of the SOG men, who were part of the joint Ganderbal Police and Rashtriya Rifles team, has put forth shocking details of the final minutes of carpenter Padroo's life in Waskoora village, few miles away from Ganderbal, on the intervening night of December 8 and 9 last year.

"It was shocking," a source among the investigators told The Indian Express. "He (the eyewitness policeman) said that Padroo was brought to the SOG camp by constable Farooq in the afternoon and then he was taken to Waskoora that night itself where he was killed," the source said.

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