December 2004 News

NC Block President, BSF Man, 2 Ultras Shot Dead

30 December 2004
The Times of India

Srinagar: Three civilians including a mother daughter duo were killed by security forces in a retaliatory action at a Tral village. One militant was killed and six persons were also injured in the attack. Elsewhere, National Conference block president, a BSF jawan and two militants were killed in different violent incidents across the valley. Reports from Lalgam village in Tral said troops of 42 RR were stopping vehicles for frisking. A militant, who was travelling in a bus, opened fire with his pistol at an army jawan. He was chased and killed. He was identified as Abdul Rasheed Bhat of Wagihama, Bijbehara. In the retaliatory fire, Rifat Jan and Jameela, daughter and wife respectively of Mohammad Yousuf Shah of Babihaar, Pulwama were also killed by forces. The locals said BSF men also opened fire at Nazir Ahmad Dar of Arampora who was walking in a field, around 100 metres away from the firing spot. Nazir died on spot. Other persons who were injured include Shameema of Barsoo, Nisar Ahmad Reshi and Ali Mohammad Wani of Madoora. A jawan was also injured. After the shoot out, reports said, the forces paraded other commuters in the freezing cold and they were asked to put off their outer garments. Even injured were not allowed to be shifted to a hospital and forces permitted them only after police intervened. The incident triggered protests against the forces in the adjoining Tral town where protestors pelted stones at vehicles and government offices. Strong pro-freedom slogans rented the air on the occassion. Police said the slain militant belonged to Hizbul Mujahideen and was released only some time back after undergoing detention under PSA. A defence and BSF spokesmen, meanwhile, have given contradictory statements on the incident. Quoting a defence spokesman Lt Col V K Batra, CNS a local news agency said, army was frisking the commuters when a militant opened fire at troops in which one jawan was injured. The militant was chased and killed subsequently. The officer, according to CNS, said a BSF patrol was passing near-by and it were they who opened fire at a passenger bus causing deaths and injuries. He said army helped in shifting the injured to hospital. The BSF, on the other hand, said its men were not present on the spot when the firing took place. A spokesman said BSF reached the spot half an hour after the incident and did not open any fire. Militants today killed Farooq Ahmad Zargar, National Conference block president at Safa Kadal in old city here. Militants this morning entered his house and opened indiscriminate fire at him which caused his death. In a separate incident, a BSF jawan was killed by militants outside Sopore bus stand. He was identified as Raj Kumar. The killing created panic in the area and searches were conducted afterwards. Al Khandaq, an unknown group, has claimed responsibility. One militant was killed in an exchange of fire at Matribug, Kulgam. He was identified as Walid Hussain of Rawalpindi. A jawan was also critically injured in the shoot-out. An unidentified militant was also killed at Panju in South Kashmir. A defence spokesman said the operation was in progress in the late evening here.


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