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Akash Mehra succumbs; LG, Ors express grief

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Srinagar: The son of the owner of popular eatery Krishna Dhaba, who was shot at by militants on February 17, died at a hospital here on Sunday, officials said.

Akash Mehra was undergoing treatment at the SMHS Hospital for the past 10 days.

Mehra succumbed to his injuries in the early hours of Sunday, the officials said.

He was shot at by militants from a close range and critically wounded, the police had said.

The Muslim Janbaz Force, a militant outfit which was active in the early 1990s, had claimed responsibility for the attack.

Krishna Dhaba, which is famous for serving vegetarian food, is located in Durganag, a high-security area of the city. Several high-profile installations like the office of UN Military Observers Group for India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) and the residence of the Jammu and Kashmir chief justice are located within 200 metres of the food joint.

The police have arrested three persons allegedly owing allegiance to a “shadow outfit” of the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba for their involvement in the attack.

Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha expressed grief over the death of Akash Mehra and said militants would never succeed in their nefarious designs.

“Saddened to hear about the tragic loss of Akash Mehra, son of the owner of Krishna Dhaba in Srinagar. Condolences to the bereaved family. May God give strength to the family to bear this irreparable loss,” Sinha said on Twitter.

He said the perpetrators of the attack would be brought to justice.

“Terrorists will never succeed in their nefarious designs, and those responsible for such heinous acts shall be brought to justice,” he said in another tweet.

PDP President Mehbooba Mufti, NC Vice President Omar Abdullah, Peoples Conference President Sajad Lone and Apni Party President Syed Altaf Bukhari besides other political and social activists expressed grief over the demise.

Meanwhile, Akash Mehra was cremated at Jammu amid protests by mourners who demanded severe action against the culprits.

A pall of gloom descended on Janipur locality of the city as the body of Akash Mehra was received by his wailing relatives and neighbours at his residence.

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