Violent Start to Summer 2017: 12 killed in first week of May

Summer has started on a violent note in Kashmir. In the first week of May, at least 12 persons, including six policemen, two bank guards and four civilians, have been killed in various incidents.
At the end of April, the casualty figure of security forces in Kashmir was 12. With the killing of six policemen last week, the toll has jumped to 18. This is much higher when compared to corresponding period last year which was incidentally one of bloodiest year for the security forces. In 2016, the forces lost 87 men which was the highest toll since 2008.
The forces suffered high casualty last week even though a massive cordon and search operations were conducted by the Army, police and CRPF in Shopian district of south Kashmir on May 4.
The confidence of militants can be gauged that when the Army was returning after the operations in Shopian on May 4, they fired at their vehicles that left a civilian driver dead and two soldiers injured.
The spate of killings started on May 1 when militants attacked a J&K Bank cash van in south Kashmir’s Kulgam and left five policemen and two bank guards dead. The militants stopped the cash van and shot policemen and the guards. The militants also took away the rifles of the four policemen.
A day later, militants looted two banks in Pulwama. The robberies and the attack on the cash van prompted J&K Bank to stop cash transactions at 40 of its branches in Pulwama and Shopian.
“The militancy is on the rise and many locals are joining the militants. It is a cause of concern,” a senior security officer said. “We are, however, geared up for challenge,” he said.
The militants on May 6 attacked a police party in Kulgam which was on its way to an accident site on the Srinagar-Jammu highway. Five persons, including three civilians, a cop and a militant, were killed and two others were injured in the incident. The police said local slain militant Fayaz Ahmad Ishwar alias Setha was involved in the attack on the BSF convoy in Udhampur in 2015. During Fayaz’s funeral, a group of militants appeared and gave a gun salute.’
The IGP, Kashmir, Javaid, Gillani said there were some pockets in south Kashmir that were troublesome. “The situation is in control in north and central Kashmir. There are certain areas in south Kashmir where we have some issues. However, we are taking measures in these areas,” Gillani said, adding that they had identified the militants involved in the recent bank robberies.
“Investigation has revealed that Hizbul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Toiba terrorists were involved in the recent incidents of bank loots in south Kashmir,” the IG said.

Related posts