Hizb rejects Indian allegations
11 November 2006
Muzaffarabad: Kashmir's largest fighter group Hizbul Mujahideen has condemned a grenade attack outside a mosque in Indian held Kashmir and rejected the allegation that it was behind the grisly act. A girl and four boys, aged between 11 and 18 years, were killed and nearly 40 others were wounded in an explosion outside a mosque in Tahab village of held Kashmir's Pulwama district on Friday. A police spokesman had alleged that the Hizb fighters were responsible for the blast. “Targeting civilians is not permitted in our manifesto. Rather all fighters have been given categorical directions not launch attacks even on occupation forces when they are at public places or in residential areas, let alone mosques, shrines, temples and other places of worship,” said Hizb spokesman Ehsan Elahi in a statement here on Saturday. “Hizbul Mujahideen believes in religious harmony and tolerance and there does not arise any question of its involvement in such ghastly acts,” he declared. Occupied Kashmir media said Indian security forces had arrested a 22-year-old youth, Ghulam Nabi Mir, on the charge of lobbing the grenade outside the mosque. However, Mr Elahi said that the factual position was that the innocent citizen was sitting with other faithful inside the mosque when the attack was launched. He said the youth was handed over to the Indian army by a staunch pro-India political worker of the National Conference whose father was punished by militants last year for his anti-freedom movement activities. “Although the NC worker was told by some faithful that the youth had been with them in the mosque, but the worker handed him over to the occupation forces to settle the old score,” Mr Elahi said. “Hizbul Mujahideen not only strongly condemns the ferocious attack but also wants to give exemplary punishment to its perpetrators,” Mr Elahi said. Expressing sympathies with the people of Tahab village on behalf of his group, the spokesman asked them not to fall prey to the New Delhi-sponsored propaganda. “We share your pain and grief and we hope that you will differentiate between your friends and foes on such occasions,” he said.