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Kashmir: Indian police officer arrested for aiding militants

January 12, 2020

Divinder Singh was a senior officer who participated in anti-militancy operations. He had previously been accused of aiding insurgents before a deadly attack in 2001.

A police officer in Kashmir
Image: Getty Images/AFP/R. Bakshi

A senior Indian police officer was arrested in Kashmir, the chief of police confirmed on Sunday, for his suspected ties to militants in the region.

The man, Divinder Singh, was found driving two rebels towards the city of Jammu. His companions were also arrested.

"We have registered a case against (Singh) under the arms, explosives and unlawful activities acts," police chief Vijay Kumar told reporters. "It is a sensitive case and we don't want any loopholes."

Kashmir, which is claimed by both Pakistan and India, has been experiencing increasing amounts of violence and turmoil since New Delhi stripped it of its autonomy in August, imposing new restrictions on its people and curbing access to the internet.

It is highly unusual for a top-level police officer to be accused of supporting insurgents. Singh had been active in anti-militancy operations and received a special commendation for his work in 2019. One of the men arrested with him was a former police officer.

However, in one instance dating back to 2001, Singh had been accused of helping armed militants travel to New Delhi for an attack on the Indian Parliament that left 14 people dead, including five terrorists.

In 2006, Singh admitted he had tortured the man who accused him of aiding the attackers, Mohammad Afzal Guru, while in custody. Guru was executed for his role in the crime.

Kumar said that these earlier allegations would now be revisited.

"We will ask him about the attack in the interrogation," the police chief said.

es/rc (AFP, Reuters)

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