An internal inquiry ordered by Indian Army authorities has revealed that the Army personnel exceeded powers vested in them under the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) during an encounter in Jammu and Kashmir's Shopian district.
The incident had resulted in the deaths of three men on July 18. The family of the three men had alleged it was a "fake encounter" and that the men had nothing to do with militancy.
"There will be zero tolerance towards any wrongdoings," Army Chief Gen Manoj Mukund Naravane said.
"The Amshipora case investigations will be conducted with utmost fairness and will be taken to their logical conclusion. The Indian Army is committed to the professional conduct of operations. It has zero-tolerance for violation of established guidelines while operating in disturbed areas," the Army Chief added.
According to the Indian Army, the inquiry has revealed certain prima facie evidence indicating that during the operation, powers vested under AFSPA, 1990 were exceeded and the "Do's and Don'ts of Chief of Army Staff (COAS) as approved by the Supreme Court of India have been contravened".
A court of inquiry has found Army officials guilty and has recommended action under sections of the Army Act against those found guilty.
Three Rajouri residents, namely Imtiyaz Ahmed, Abrar Ahmed and Mohd Ibrar were killed in an operation in July of this year.
"Indian Army is committed to the ethical conduct of operations. Further updates on the case will be given periodically without affecting the due process of the law of the land," the Army said in a statement on September 18.
The inquiry was first initiated after family members of the three deceased alleged that this was a case of fake encounter and the boys had no connections with any terror outfits. The family had claimed that the men left home on July 16 in search of work. They reached Shopian district where they rented a room and purchased a few essentials amid the lockdown.