Tehseen Nazir, 16, on his way to tuition classes was crushed to death by a Jammu and Kashmir Police vehicle at 9:30 a.m. on 7th January. The J&K Police issued a statement calling his death an accident.
The police vehicle was travelling at a high speed from Natipora to Nowgam Bypass when the driver of the vehicle hit a Maruti car and the boy.
Clashes erupted in Srinagar’s Nowgam area after the 16-year-old, a student of Candid Public School, died when he came under a vehicle used by the J&K Police’s Armed Battalion.
Tehseen’s father Nazir Ahmed works as a peon in his school. Ahmed described Tehseen as “the light of his eyes” that had been brutally snatched away from him, ThePrint reported.
“His tiny body bruised and crushed, lying on the roadside. How alone and cold must he have felt in his last moments. My heart broke into a million pieces,” Ahmed said.
Residents were angered by the accident and by the police’s refusal to return the body of the deceased youth.
When the clashes between residents and police began, the armed forces set up barricades to contain the enraged group. At least four people, including a woman, were injured and admitted in a hospital nearby.
Hospital authorities told ThePrint that the injured also included a 62-year old shopkeeper named Mohammad Yousuf, who was left wounded after a tear gas shell pierced through his thigh.
The police’s statement said: “The road traffic accident happened when two vehicles, one of which belonged to Armed Police, collided, and consequently, two persons sustained injuries. The injured persons were shifted to hospital for treatment of injuries; however, one of the injured persons, identified as Tehseen Nazir of Nowgam, succumbed while the other person injured continues to receive treatment at the hospital and is stated to be stable.”
Officials in J&K added that an FIR has been filed and an investigation has begun.
However, Tehseen’s family has claimed that the police took the boy’s body and chased away crowds violently, after the accident. His mother was allegedly beaten up.
ThePrint reported that the residents’ homes had broken window panes and they accused the police force of using “excessive and brute force”.
Tehseen’s family members, who were awaiting their child’s body throughout the day and were supposedly handed over the corpse in the evening after certain formalities were completed in the Police Control Room (PCR), Rising Kashmir reported.
Speaking to media persons, Tehseen’s father said: “I was going to work when I heard that a death had taken place nearby. At that time, I didn’t know my son had been killed. I saw crowds gathering at the spot, but I passed them and walked towards my school. Someone called me on my mobile phone sometime later. He told me that a boy had been killed in an accident and that his bag was lying on the roadside.”
“They had found a notebook in the bag from where they found out who had been killed. The notebook had the name ‘Tehseen Nazir’ written,” he added, breaking down.
A female relative of the family who lives nearby claimed that the police had caused damage to their homes.
“They killed an innocent boy and then entered our homes breaking everything in their way. We don’t have arms or stones; only Allah’s justice. I hope those responsible for the death meet justice,” she told ThePrint.
The valley of Kashmir has entered the 6th month of its communications shutdown and seven deaths, including Tehseen Nazir’s, have been reported since August 5th 2019 when Article 370 was read down.