Majid Kapra

Have identified killers of Kashmiri Pandit in Shopian: DGP

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Administration moves to attach house of involved militant, police arrest his kin; SIT set to probe killing

Srinagar: The killers of Sunil Kumar Bhat, a Kashmiri Pandit have been identified and they will be given stringent punishment, Jammu and Kashmir DGP Dilbagh Singh said on Wednesday.

The administration also initiated the process of attaching the house of a militant involved in the killing, while his father and three brothers were arrested for sheltering him.

“We have identified the two suspects who had killed him (Bhat). Follow up action is underway and we are working on it,” the DGP told reporters on the sidelines of a function here.

He said stringent punishment will be handed out to those involved in the killing of Sunil Kumar.

Terrorists shot dead the Kashmiri Pandit and injured his cousin on Tuesday at an apple orchard in south Kashmir’s Shopian district.

During initial investigation, involvement of an “active terrorist”, Adil Ahmad Wani, son of Mohammad Khalil Wani of Kutpora surfaced, police spokesman said in a statement here.

Wani was identified by eyewitnesses and Sunil Kumar’s cousin as the person who fired indiscriminately at him and his brother while they were working in the apple orchard on Tuesday, officials said.

Police spokesman said an input was received by police regarding the presence of accused Adil Wani at his ancestral house at Kutpora, following which police along with the troops of 34 RR and 178 Bn CRPF launched search operation in the area at wee hours on Wednesday.

“During search, terrorist lobbed grenade on the search party which was retaliated by search party. However, terrorist escaped taking benefit of darkness,” spokesman said.

He said the security forces also found a hideout in the rooftop of the house and recovered arms and ammunition including one AK rifle along with a magazine and a pistol from there.

A separate case {FIR No. 154/2022 U/S 307 IPC, 7/27 IA Act 16,18,19,20 ULA(P) Act} was registered and three persons from Adil Wani’s family were arrested “for harbouring terrorists”.

The arrested persons include Wani’s brothers — Arif Ahmad Wani, Shabir Ahmad Wani and Touseef Ahmad Wani, sons of Mohammad Khalil Wani of Kutpora, Shopian, police spokesman said.

However, PTI reported that besides brothers their father Mohammad Khalil Wani was also arrested. Police also said the process for attachment of their property as proceed of terrorism has been initiated U/S 25 of UAPA, Act 1967.

Further investigation of the above cases is under process and SIT has been constituted, police said.

Pertinently, earlier this year, the police had announced that it would start the process of “attachment of some immovable properties which have been used for purpose of terrorism as per section 2(g) and 25 of ULP Act (Unlawful Activities Prevention Act)” and asked people “not to shelter or harbour terrorists/terror associates”.

Under this provision, all kinds of properties that have been derived or obtained from the commission of any terrorist act or intended to be used for a terrorist act can be seized.

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