Memories of the massacre are still fresh in the minds of people and they are waiting for the day when the perpetrators would be punished.
The Traders Federation of Kupwara, on Monday held a prayer meeting to remember those who fell prey to the troopers’ bullets. “We demand that case should be reopened and killers be punished,” the traders said.
On the fateful day, troops of 15 Punjab and Gharwal regiments opened indiscriminate fire killing 27 civilians in Kupwara market. After the incident, police registered a case and assured the residents that erring troopers would be punished.
“There was no headway made after the case was registered. We are waiting for the day when killers would be punished,” said one of the survivors.
Recalling the incident, the survivors said that the troops fired upon people only to avenge the strike observed by shopkeepers on January 26. They said that the patrolling party of Punjab regiment had warned the shopkeepers on January 25 of dire consequences if they observed strike and didn’t celebrate India’s Republic Day.
“As the shopkeepers opened their shops on January 27, troopers opened fire from all the directions killing 27 people. After unleashing death, troopers asked survivors to assemble in the ground and undergo an identification parade,” recalled a survivor.
He said that no one was allowed to lift the bodies and take the injured to hospital adding, “A boy died in front of his father, who begged the troopers to allow him to take his son to the hospital. But troopers didn’t pay any heed towards his pleas.”