BBC, Saturday, 22 June, 2002, 16:00 GMT
Pakistani soldier 'tortured to death'
Pakistan has accused India of torturing and killing one its border guards earlier this week in an incident along their border.
From the autopsy, it has been ascertained that he was brutally murdered Pakistani spokesman Rashid Qureshi
Government spokesman General Rashid Qureshi said the soldier was captured after straying into no-man's land.
Journalists in Islamabad were shown a video of a body that had been mutilated, and were told that the autopsy showed signs of torture.
General Qureshi said the soldier was then shot dead at point-blank range.
The row came as EU leaders issued a fresh appeal to both countries to do more to defuse tensions between them, which have led to a million or so men being deployed along the border.
The Pakistanis named the soldier as Corporal Maqsood.
They said he had gone into no-man's land to retrieve some camels.
"It is evident from the condition of the mutilated body that the deceased was subjected to intense torture by burning his skin with cigarette butts, shooting him in the leg and physical beating before he was killed," said General Qureshi.
He warned that such incidents could "snowball" as it could prove difficult to control the response of the soldiers.
India has denied the torture allegation, saying it is "totally incorrect".
A defence ministry spokesman said the Pakistani soldier had been killed in an exchange of fire after crossing the border in order to infiltrate Indian territory.
The Indian spokesman said that one of their officers had also been killed in the exchange of fire.
The incident was said to have taken place three days ago along the border between Pakistan's Punjab province and the Indian state of Rajasthan.
The body of the dead Pakistani soldier was handed back the next day.
Paknews.com, updated on 2002-06-23 12:30:15
Gruesome killing of Pak soldier by Indian Army
ISLAMABAD, June 23 (PNS): Pakistan will move UN and international community over the brutally martyred Pakistan rangers jawan by Indian forces besides lodging a strong protest with India over this gruesome incident of killing.
This was said by Major General Rashid Qureshi, director general of ISPR while addressing a press conference here Saturday. He regretted that Indian troops subjected Lance Naik Maqsood to relentless violence before killing him. The parts of his body were scorched and damaged badly, he told.
"I will appeal international community to see how terribly the Indian forces are violating the human rights", he pointed out. World community should take serious notice of the reign of terror unleashed by the Indian forces on the innocent and unarmed Kashmiris in Indian held Kashmir, he stressed.
Spelling out the fears of war, he said that Pakistan has always been saying that both Pakistan and Indian forces are in eyeball-to-eyeball confrontation at the international borders as well as LoC and a tiny flare up can lead to dire consequences, as either side will not be able to control it.
Citing to ghastly incident of killing of Pakistan rangers' jawan at Bahawalpur borders he urged the international community to mount pressure on India to hold probe into this horrendous event and bring the perpetrators to justice.
He held that Pakistan had always advocated talks for resolution of all contentious issues but de-escalatory steps are needed ahead of resumption of dialogue process.
He went on to say that Pakistan besides lodging strong protest with India would divert attention of world community and UN to the horrible incident of killing at Bahawalpur borders through diplomatic channels with calling upon to inquire into the incident.
To a question, he warned India that Pakistan would pay back in the same coin if it endeavors to resort to any misadventure at LoC or make aggressive incursion across the international borders. India will have to face the dire consequences, he stated emphatically.
Giving brief of Bahawalpur borders incident, he said that both Pakistan and Indian troops traded fire, which killed 8 Indian troops including their assistant commanding officer. " Such incidents will inflame the tension" he cautioned.
He maintained that Pakistan had been exercising restraint adding " Pakistan finds it hard to prevent its troops from responding to Indian offences after Bahawalpur incident".
Responding to a question he observed that nothing was happening across the LoC adding that General Musharraf had made it clear on several occasions that world should see that indigenous freedom movement was going on in held Kashmir. India is staying away from abiding by the UN resolutions on Kashmir issue, he regretted.
He informed that Director General Military Operations of both the countries had established contact on Tuesday.
About withdrawal of Indian forces from borders, he said that Pakistan had not found any evidence of about pull back of Indian troops from borders.
While talking about the revenge of Bahawalpur borders incident he announced in unequivocal terms, that Pakistan army has its own traditions in this respect and it will continue to uphold these traditions.
ISLAMABAD - Pak Army soldier
Lance-Naik Maqsood's body brutally tortured by Indian Army:
The News International,
Sunday, June 23, 2002
Pakistan seeks probe into Lance Naik's torture, killing
By Shakil Shaikh
ISLAMABAD: Lance-Naik Maqsood's body is shown on television during a news conference attended by military spokesman Major-General Rashid Qureshi here on Saturday.
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Saturday called upon the world community to use its influence on India for carrying out an inquiry and punish those who fraudulently lured and captured a Pakistani Ranger, Lance Naik Maqsood, and brutally murdered him after intense torture.
"It is evident from the condition of the mutilated body that they subjected the deceased to intense torture by burning his skin with cigarette butts, shooting him in the leg and beating him physical before he was killed," said military spokesman Maj-Gen Rashid Qureshi while addressing a press conference here.
He said that Pakistan would lodge a protest with the UN as well and expect that a probe would be conducted in the matter. On the occasion, a video film of Shaheed Lance Naik Maqsood, which depicted his body conditions, was shown to international and local journalists.
The autopsy report, said Maj-Gen Qureshi, indicated that there were 14 injuries inflicted on the body of the fraudulently-captured Pakistani Ranger, who was shot through his chest after intense torture in violation of human rights.
"In the name of humanity, the world should ask India to carry out inquiry and punish those involved in this ghastly act of human right abuse," said Maj-Gen Qureshi, who is also the presidential spokesman.
The incident of dragging late Maqsood by 8 to 10 Indian BSF personnel took place last Wednesday. "The body of Lance Naik Maqsood of Pakistan Rangers -- who was fraudulently lured in and captured by the Indian army, while he was trying to recover the camels, which had strayed into no man's land -- was handed over to Pakistan on Thursday," said an official announcement here on Saturday.
"Lance Naik Maqsood was trapped and forcibly dragged away by the Indian army in Fort Abbas Sector. From the autopsy, it has been ascertained that he was brutally murdered. It is evident from the condition of the mutilated body that the deceased was subjected to intense torture; his skin was burnt with cigarette butts, he was shot in the leg and given physical beating, before being killed," the statement further said.
The claim, said an ISPR announcement, by the Indians that Lance Naik Maqsood was killed during exchange of fire is belied by the facts that he was shot from point-blank range. "The incident is a clear violation of Geneva Convention. This brutal act speaks of Indian cunning duplicity and barbaric approach towards human rights," it added.
After receiving the body of the deceased, Pakistan Rangers later buried the martyr with full military honours. The first fire exchange on the international border at Bahawalpur-Rajasthan sector took place last Wednesday, when India using heavy artillery and mortars and claimed that Lance Naik Maqsood was killed in cross exchange.
The video film, which showed mutilated body of the deceased Lance Naik, was a hard proof of what was done by Indian BSF personnel with the Pakistani ranger. His entire body was inflicted with torture, probably electric shocks were given, something probably red chillies were shoved in his eyes, dark-blue spots were seen on the body which was a clear establishment of torturing and gun-shot which pierced through his chest.
The film reflected that dark-blue spots were seen on the legs, front of the body, his face, eyes, ears and where not. It was a clear case of violation of Geneva Convention. The doctor, who explained the nature of torture, said that the deceased was killed 15 to 30 hours before he was handed over to Pakistan and intense torture was inflicted on his body. "So much so, his finger-tips were burned and hand and legs were tied," said the doctor.
Maj-Gen Qureshi said that in exchange of fire, around 8 to 10 Indians were killed, though the Pakistani ranger was at zero-line and had not entered into the Indian side for recovering the stray camels.
He said an Indian BSF assistant commandant was killed, and he confirmed contacts between director-general military operations (DG MOs) and a flag meeting between the area commanders following the incident.
Such incidents, he said, like exchange of fire on the international border and Indian spy-plane intruding in to 10 miles of Pakistan air space could have spilled over impact and could spark off bigger exchange. "Pakistan Army traditionally does not believe in such crimes," said Qureshi.
Referring to the military stand-off between India and Pakistan, Maj-Gen Qureshi said that Pakistan had got no indication of troops withdrawal by India. The steps announced by New Delhi regarding withdrawal of its warships and lifting of ban on Pakistani over-flights etc were cosmetic, he said. "President General Pervez Musharraf has already announced that no one has crossed over the LoC, and this view has been confirmed and accepted by the world leaders," he said.
He said that India amassed its forces on the borders and "there is no indication of their pull-back to peace-time locations." "What's going on inside held Kashmir is the freedom struggle.""There must be a dialogue on the Kashmir problem and this issue needs to be resolved under the UN resolutions," he said. India is badly mistaken that by massing troop and forces it could coerce Pakistan, he said, adding that any incident of a kind which took place at the international borders could spark a war. He denied Pakistan and India having any other contact except the one on Tuesday when the two DG MOs talked to each other.
DAWN, Sunday, June 23, 2002
Pakistan to lodge protest with UN: Soldier's killing by Indian troops
By Our Staff Reporter
ISLAMABAD, June 22: Pakistan will
lodge a protest with the United Nations over brutal torture and
killing of a soldier of Pakistan Rangers by the Indian army, who
was allowed in no mans land for the recovery of two stray camels
on Wednesday at Fort Abbass in Bhawalpur sector.
An autopsy of Lance Naik Maqsood's body, handed back to the Pakistan Army on Thursday, showed that he was subjected to "third degree torture" and was shot at a close range, ISPR Director-General Maj-Gen Rashid Qureshi told a press conference on Saturday.
A video film of the body was also screened at the press conference where many foreign newsmen were also present.
The doctor, who conducted the autopsy, narrated on the occasion that there were 14 wounds on Maqsood's body including the signs of electric shocks. Severe bruises on the wrists showed that he was tied with ropes. One of his ears was amputated, and his face and eyes also bore injuries.
The film also showed a bullet hole in the chest, which, the doctor said, was fired at a point-blank range as it had pierced through the heart breaking the ribs cage. "It is evident from the mutilated body that the soldier was subjected to intense torture by burning his skin with cigarette butts, shooting him in the leg and beating before the fatal shot at a point-blank range," Mr Qureshi said. He refuted the Indian claims that Maqsood had been killed in cross fire.
It was a blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions, and Pakistan would launch a protest with the UN, he added.
Straying of animals was not an unusual incident as normally soldiers of both countries would go to each other's area for the recovery of these animals, he added.
On June 19 at 5.15pm, when Maqsood went to no mans land for the recovery of camels, he was captured and dragged by eight to ten Indian soldiers to their post, where he was later tortured and killed.
Mr Qureshi said that later in an exchange of fire, seven to eight Indian army soldiers, including an assistant commandant, were killed. Mr Qureshi, appealing to the international community to take stock of the situation, said the incident or the Indian spy plane's entry into the Pakistani airspace could have resulted into an all-out war between the two countries.
He also called upon the Indian government to carry out a probe into the incident and punish those responsible for the blatant violation of the Geneva Conventions. He also urged New Delhi to move its troops to the peace-time positions for removing chances of an accidental war between India and Pakistan.
In reply to a question, he said the current incident on the international borders had worsened the situation. "In such a situation it is very hard to control the troops," he added.
Answering another question, he said the ensued exchange of fire involved artillery, and there were also traces of the use of tank rounds.
INDIA DENIES CHARGES: New Delhi on Saturday denied charges by Pakistan that the Indian army had tortured and killed one of its troops on the border, saying the soldier was shot dead as he tried to illegally enter the Indian area. "There is no question of any torture," an Indian defence ministry spokesman said, AFP writes.
"The soldier was trying to infiltrate into India and was killed during an encounter. One of our officers, assistant commander of the Border Security Force, Sumer Singh, was also killed in the clash. The soldier's body was handed over at a flag meeting on Thursday."
The News Internationl, Monday,
June 24, 2002
Tension as high as ever: Qureshi
ISLAMABAD: Director General Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) Maj-Gen Rashid Qureshi has said tension between India and Pakistan will persist if the Kashmir issue is not resolved. In an interview with BBC, Maj-Gen Qureshi said the international community should get the Indo-Pak tension defused through a formal dialogue process.
"The situation at LoC is as it was earlier," he said, adding: "Indian troops are on the borders and India is not talking about resumption of dialogue." He said that the border tension might be reduced if some steps were taken to resolve the Kashmir issue peacefully through dialogue. Maj-Gen Qureshi described the Indian allegations on infiltration as an "eye-wash". "They (Indians) want to level an accusation on Pakistan and bring it to the notice of the international community that someone is coming from across the Line of Control. Why does not (India) talk about the freedom movement in the occupied Kashmir where the Kashmiri people are fed up with the Indian occupation. Why India is showing stubbornness and continuing its occupation by force?"
He said the international community should conduct an inquiry into the incident of killing of Pakistani soldier. "These are not accusations. We are telling the truth to the media, international media. We are proving it with the help of reports and video film," he added. "It is India which says that the Pakistani soldier was killed in the encounter," he said, adding: "Had he been killed in the encounter, his body would not have been tied with the rope, his skin would not have been peeled off, he would not have been shot from a close range of two feet, he would not have been given electric shocks and he would not have been burnt with cigarettes."
He said it never happened till date that the Pakistani Army or any other force tortured any Indian soldier. "India has mounted tension and deployed troops on the borders," he said, adding: "We used to send back an Indian soldier if he wrongfully entered the Pakistani territory. We also sent back an animal if it intruded into the Pakistani territory."
Meanwhile talking to AFP, Maj-Gen Rashid Qureshi warned that tensions with India were as high as ever following the alleged torture and shooting of one of its unarmed soldiers. He said the recent progress in de-escalating tensions had been eroded because of the death. India risked being blamed for a "state-sponsored" killing if it did not punish those involved, he added. "Whatever cosmetic actions the Indians have taken have not reduced tensions at all," he said, referring to recent diplomatic and military manoeuvres by India aimed at easing the crisis. "This just goes to show tensions are exactly what they were a month back or a few months back. There is no decrease in tension at all."
Qureshi said he had heard no official response from India after calling for an inquiry into the death of Lance Naik Maqsood. "They need to take action, otherwise it will be state-sponsored," he said. "If the government is not involved, the government needs to take action against the perpetrators of this act. It's something we will not forget. It's something that needs to be investigated; and if they say they are fair and open, they need to investigate it and get to the bottom of it."
Qureshi said it had finally been exposed to the world that the brutal murder of Lance Naik Maqsood by Indians "is an atrocity which is similar to that the Indians carry out in held Kashmir". Responding to a query that the Indians were earlier terming the killing an incident of crossfire but on Sunday the official Indian spokesman said that Lance Naik Maqsood had tried to intrude and was killed by Indian army, Qureshi said: "It's typical Indian duplicity."
He told: "They (Indians) have contradicted their own initial statement wherein they had said that Lance Naik Maqsood of the Pakistan Rangers was killed in a crossfire -- trying to blame on the exchange of fire between India and Pakistan. In fact, the Lance Naik was brutally murdered by the Indians."
Qureshi said from the autopsy report an ample proof is available that Lance Naik Maqsood was subjected to brutal torture, his body being badly mutilated with cigarette butts and electric shocks, with the skin being peeled with some sharp razor and then being killed by gunshots from a close range. He agreed that the independent world media was not prepared to accept the Indian version in the matter, which keeps on changing, as always.
The very change of blame by India, the DG ISPR said made it clear that Indians were admitting their dastardly act of barbarism. "This brutal act speaks of the cunning Indian duplicity and barbaric approach towards human rights," he said.