Masked Guerrillas Kill Former Kashmir Minister
21 October 2004
Srinagar: Masked separatist guerrillas gunned down a former state minister in Indian Kashmir on Thursday as he was coming out of a mosque after prayers, police said. It was the biggest strike by Muslim militants fighting Indian rule in the disputed region since the holy fasting month of Ramadan began in Kashmir, the cause of two of the three wars between India and Pakistan. 'When we reached the site, Safdar Baig was lying dead in a pool of blood, while his security guard was seriously wounded,' a police official said. Baig, a former revenue minister and senior leader of the main opposition National Conference party, was killed in Anantnag town, 54 km (33 miles) south of Srinagar, the Muslim-majority region's summer capital. There has been no let-up in violence in the Himalayan territory despite a sustained peace process since 2003 between India and Pakistan who administer different parts of the territory. More than 40,000 people have been killed in the revolt in Indian Kashmir which started in 1989.