Probe panel says no foul play in NC worker’s death

In a relief to J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, the commission of retired Supreme Court judge H S Bedi, which probed the death of National Conference worker Haji Syed Mohammad Yousuf, has ruled out foul play.

Bedi submitted his 96-page probe report to Law Secretary G H Tantray Saturday.

Yousuf, 61, a familiar face in the corridors of power and considered close to Union Minister Farooq Abdullah, was taken into custody by IG, Crime Branch, Raja Aijaz Ali at the residence of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on September 29, 2011. He was called there by Omar following complaints that he had taken bribes from two partymen in lieu of a berth in the ministry and the Legislative Council. He died a day later.

Facing allegations, including by his family, that Yousuf was killed in custody at the behest of "powerful people like the chief minister, MoS for Home Nasir Aslam and IG, Crime", the state appointed Bedi to probe the death.

His panel concluded that Yousuf's death was "caused by a heart attack and that no suspicious circumstances can be spelt out". "No lapse can be attributed to either Raja Aijaz Ali or Dr Kuchay, in charge of the police hospital, in the discharge of their duties."

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