Honouring Major Gogoi unbecoming of Army's traditions:Tarigami

Srinagar
24 May 2017

Senior CPI(M) leader and MLA Kulgam M Y Tarigami today termed as "provocative" the honouring of Major Leetul Gogoi, saying it was unbecoming of the Army's traditions. The officer, who is in the midst of a row for tying up a Kashmiri man to a jeep allegedly as a shield against stone- pelters, was honoured by Army chief General Bipin Rawat recently with a 'Commendation Card' "for his sustained efforts in counter-insurgency operations". Tarigami, in a statement issued here, said "The Army's decision to award the officer is highly condemnable and provocative. It was unbecoming of the Army's traditions."  He demanded that the court of inquiry ordered by the Army in the incident must fix the "responsibilities" and award "punishment" to those involved in the "gross human rights violation" of tying up a civilian to an army jeep and used as a human shield. "What message you want to convey to Kashmiris by awarding an erring officer? Is an erring officer so important while sentiments of people of Kashmir are ignored?" the CPI(M) leader questioned. Meanwhile, Opposition National Conference's women wing today protested against the PDP-led government here for allegedly pursuing "anti-Kashmir" and "anti-youth" policies. They were demanding initiation of dialogue and an end to "state terrorism", use of pellet guns and mass arrests across the Valley. The women activists, who were led by NC provincial president and MLA Shameema Firdous, took out a protest rally from the party headquarters Nawai Subah complex, but were stopped by the police at Polo Ground before reaching Civil Secretariat. Addressing the rally at TRC chowk, Firdous said, "This government has proved anti-Kashmiri and anti-public. It has waged a war against the public in general and the youth in particular."  Alleging "failure" of the state government, she said it has "broken all previous records of atrocities". "Pellets, bullets and teargas shells are being showered inside schools and colleges. Brute force is being used against students in clear violation of democratic values and freedom of expression," the MLA said. "An Army officer is awarded for tying a youth to a military jeep as a human shield," she said, referring to Major Leetul Gogoi who was honoured with the Army Chief's Commendation Card. Saying that "no such example is witnessed in the past", Fidous alleged that there is no impact on the PDP government as it is only interested in "saving its chair."  (PTI)