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Former JKHCBA President Mian Qayoom Arrested in Babar Qadri Murder Case

Former JKHCBA President Mian Qayoom Arrested in Babar Qadri Murder Case

Srinagar, June 25: In a significant development, former Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association (JKHCBA) president Mian Qayoom has been arrested in connection with the 2020 murder of prominent Kashmiri lawyer Babar Qadri. Reports indicate that this arrest marks a major step in the ongoing investigation into the high-profile case that has gripped the region’s legal and public communities.

Babar Qadri, a well-known and outspoken advocate, was brutally murdered in September 2020. The incident occurred when two individuals, posing as clients, visited Qadri’s residence in Srinagar and shot him dead. Qadri’s murder sent shockwaves through the legal fraternity and raised serious concerns about the safety of outspoken professionals in the region.

In August 2021, a special investigation team established by the Jammu and Kashmir police filed charges against five suspects in connection with Qadri’s murder. Among those implicated was Saqib Manzoor, who was identified as a key figure in the crime. Manzoor was known to be the deputy to Abbas Sheikh, the chief commander of The Resistance Front (TRF), which is regarded as a shadow front for the militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT).

Both Saqib Manzoor and Abbas Sheikh were killed by security forces in 2021, further complicating the investigation. However, the authorities continued their efforts to uncover the full extent of the conspiracy behind Qadri’s assassination. This led to significant developments in the case, including the raids conducted in 2022.

In a notable move in 2022, the Jammu and Kashmir Police raided the residences of three lawyers, including Mian Qayoom, as part of their investigation into Qadri’s murder. These raids underscored the seriousness with which the authorities were pursuing leads and the potential involvement of high-profile individuals in the crime.

The investigation took another critical turn in September 2023 when the State Investigation Agency (SIA) announced a substantial cash reward of Rs 10 lakh for information leading to the arrest of those involved in Qadri’s killing. This announcement highlighted the ongoing challenges faced by the authorities in bringing all perpetrators to justice.

Qayoom’s arrest is expected to have significant implications for the case. As a former president of the JKHCBA, his involvement, if proven, would point to a deeply rooted conspiracy within influential circles. The arrest also raises questions about the motivations and networks that may have facilitated Qadri’s murder.

The legal community and the public at large will be closely watching the developments in this case. Qayoom’s arrest marks a pivotal moment in the pursuit of justice for Babar Qadri, reflecting the authorities’ determination to resolve the case and send a strong message against impunity for such crimes.

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