Kupwara Chaos: 3 Lt Col Among 16 Booked for Police Station Attack

The incident is said to have been triggered by the questioning of a Territorial Army jawan by the Jammu and Kashmir police.

Three army lieutenant colonels and 13 others have been booked in a case of attempt to murder and dacoity over their alleged involvement in an attack on the Kupwara police station, PTI reported on Thursday.

The incident, which took place on the intervening night of Tuesday and Wednesday, is said to have been triggered by the questioning of a Territorial Army jawan by the Jammu and Kashmir Police. He was being questioned in an alleged drug case.

The Territorial Army is a military reserve force composed of part-time volunteers who provide support services to the Indian Army. A video of the incident shows a group of armed and uniformed personnel from the 160 Territorial Army storming the police station.

According to the First Information Report (FIR), the group was led by lieutenant colonels Ankit Sood, Rajiv Chauhan and Nikhil. The FIR says that the group forcibly entered the premises of the police station and brutally assaulted the police personnel present there, using rifle butts and sticks.

The situation escalated further as the army personnel brandished their weapons, and seized mobile phones from the injured police officers and even abducted a police constable before fleeing the scene, the FIR added.

According to PTI, the police constable was rescued after the intervention of senior police officers. The FIR has been registered under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty), 307 (attempt to murder), 342 (wrongful confinement) and 147 (punishment for rioting).

The accused also face charges under sections 149 (every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object), 392 (punishment for robbery), 397 (robbery, or dacoity, with attempt to cause death or grievous hurt) and 365 (kidnapping or abducting with intent secretly and wrongfully to confine person). They have also been booked under the Arms Act, according to the FIR.

Unidentified officials told PTI that the investigation into the incident is being led by the Kupwara deputy superintendent of police.

Meanwhile, a Srinagar-based defence spokesperson sought to downplay the incident, saying that the reports of an altercation between police and army personnel are “misfounded and incorrect”. “Minor differences between the police personnel and a Territorial Army unit on an operational matter have been amicably resolved,” the spokesperson said in a statement on Wednesday, reported PTI. Source

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