Mohammed Rafiq Shah’s story

canada goose jacket outlet toronto On February 16, a Delhi court canada goose outlet acquitted Shah, along with another Kashmiri man, Muhammad Hussain Fazili, of all charges related to a series of explosions that killed 67 people and left 200 wounded in the Indian capital in 2005. canada goose jacket outlet toronto

canada goose outlet shop A third Kashmiri, Tariq Ahmad Dar, was also absolved of any charges related to the canada goose outlet store uk blasts on February 24. canada goose outlet shop

READ MORE: India activists seek justice for wrongful convictions

canada goose outlet mall Shah had been charged under several sections of the penal code, including murder and waging war against the state, for which the maximum sentence is the death penalty. canada goose outlet mall

A day after his acquittal, I meet him at a hotel in south Delhi’s Nizamuddin Westarea, with his family, who had travelled from Srinagar, the summer capital of Indian administered Kashmir, for the final hearing in his case.

canada goose outlet in chicago His eyes are red; he wasn’t able to sleep the night before. canada goose outlet in chicago

“It’s the bed,” he explains with a smile. “I couldn’t sleep all night. It’s too soft for a person who has slept on. concrete for such a long time.”

canada goose factory outlet vancouver The night of his canada goose outlet store arrest canada goose factory outlet vancouver

On the night of November 21, 2005, Shah, then 27, was arrested at his house in Alasteng, a suburb of Srinagar. He still remembers the knocks on the door. Loud and persistent, they woke his entire family. It was about midnight.

canada goose outlet uk “Before anyone could muster the courage to open the door, [a] couple of men with guns had already barged into the house,” he recalls. canada goose outlet uk

From inside his room, canada goose jacket outlet Shah could hear the security forces shouting his name.

canada goose factory outlet “They grabbed me by my hair. I was beaten. When my parents tried to stop them they also met the same fate. I was blindfolded and pushed into a vehicle,” he goose outlet canada says. canada goose factory outlet

canada goose outlet canada Shah spent the next couple of days at an unknown location that he later found out was the Special Task Forces (STF) camp Haft Chinar known to locals as “Cargo” an infamous interrogation centre in Srinagar. There, he says, he wasbeaten and interrogated canada goose factory outlet about the blasts. canada goose outlet canada

OPINION: The (in)visible in Indian terrorism

STF, a counterinsurgency force, was formed in 1996, with the canada goose black friday sale stated intention of helping to quell the armed canada goose outlet online rebellion that had erupted in Indian administered Kashmir in theearly 1990s. Since canada goose outlet sale then, it has been accused of killing, raping, and torturing people in different interrogation centres across the disputed Himalayan region.

canada goose sale uk “They [the police] wanted me to confess to being one of the executors of blasts. The more I pleaded innocence the more I was beaten,” Shah says. canada goose sale uk

goose outlet canada He had heard stories of people being taken canada goose outlet toronto factory to interrogation camps and then their bodies turning up in sacks on the banks of Dal canada goose outlet new york city Lake in Srinagar. Or worse, of their families never canada goose outlet shop learning what had happened to them and whether they were dead or alive. goose outlet canada

canada goose outlet us ‘My trousers were filled with rats’ canada goose outlet us

canada goose outlet michigan But the worst was yet to come. Two days after his arrest, Shah was flown to Delhi, where he says he was again beaten and tortured by the Special Cell of the Delhi Police. canada goose outlet michigan

canada goose outlet black friday sale Shahsays that he was rarely given anything to eat and was forced canada goose outlet parka to sign blank sheets of paper, which he claims officers later filled with his canada goose outlet uk confession, forcibly gained through torture. canada goose outlet black friday sale

canada goose outlet black friday “They [the police] did things to me which can’t be said openly,” he says, seemingly conscious of his five canada goose outlet jackets year old niece canada goose outlet online uk Sumayah, who is sitting beside him. canada goose outlet black friday

Despite this, he recounts one particular experience he says he endured while in custody at first speaking softly and then with growing anger.

“They [Delhi Police] forced me to drink urine which was brought in plastic bottles. When that didn’t help them they forced me to suck the genitals of other prisoners. While forcing me to do all this, they laughed,” Shah says, his hands shaking and his eyes focused on the ground.

canada goose outlet store uk He also says that the police stripped him naked and applied electric shocks to his genitals. canada goose outlet store uk

“When that was over, my trousers were filled with rats and my body was smeared with a [live] pig, which is forbidden in our religion,” he says.