Various political and religious organizations have strongly condemned the murder of National Conference (NC) activist Ishtiyaq Ahmad Chowdhary by the Village Defense Committee (VDC) member at Kalakote, Rajouri, demanding immediate disbanding of all VDCs.
Expressing serious concern over the murder of Ishtiyaq in the board daylight, the Jama'at-e-Islami Jammu Kashmir demanded exemplary punishment to the VDC member involved in the act.
"The fact remains that it was the National Conference government only that had taken initiate to form this notorious force. In valley, NC led government also created large bands government gunmen to get hundreds of innocent people killed. These bands not only killed the innocents but also indulged in loot, plunder and rape and molestation innocent women. They were given medals and cash rewards for perpetrating the worst crimes against humanity in the Valley. Now today, NC has fallen into the same well it had dug for other people," the Jama'at spokesman said in astatement.
Expressing anguish over the murder, the Jammu Kashmir National Front (NF) chairman Nayeem Ahmad Khan today alleged that the Village Defense Committees (VDCs) had been formed to suppress and terrorize the Muslims of Jammu division. "The VDC members have been perpetrating atrocities on the Muslims of Jammu division ever since the formation of this force came into existence. There are thousands of instances where notorious VDC members have committed atrocities on Muslims of Rajouri, Poonch, Doda, Kishtwar, Baderwah and other areas. They are patronized at government level, so whatever human rights violations take place at their hands is a handiwork of the government only," Nayeem Khan alleged.
Jammu Kashmir Salvation Movement (JKSM) chairman Zaffar Akbar Bhat expressed deep outrage over the murder of NC activist and demanded immediate disarming and disbanding of VDCs.
"The VDC members under a planned strategy are creating strife and terror in society. In past too, the VDC members gang-raped a minor girl in Kishtwar and murdered a boy in Doda. They are involved in threatening people, killing and rapping the women. These inhuman acts by the VDC members amply prove that the puppet government has given them a freehand to do whatever crime they want to do.