Shutdown in Banihal against killing of militant commander Zakir Musa

Witnesses said that extra forces have been deployed in Banihal and other adjacent areas affected by shutdown.
Shutdown in Banihal against killing of militant commander Zakir Musa

A complete shutdown is being observed in highway town ofBanihal in Ramban district of Jammu and Kashmir against the killing of militantcommander Zakir Musa.

All shops, business establishments and schools are closedwhile local traffic is off the roads in Banihal.

Witnesses said that extra forces have been deployed inBanihal and other adjacent areas affected by shutdown.

Curfew-like restrictions were imposed in parts of Srinagar,summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, on Friday to prevent protests against thekilling of militant commander Zakir Musa late last night.

All schools, colleges and universities have been closedacross Kashmir today as a "precautionary measure", divisional commissionerKashmir announced yesterday. Kashmir University and IUST Awantipora havepostponed all the exams scheduled today.

The body of Ansar Gazwatul Hind (AGH) chief Zakir Musa whowas killed in a gunfight last night in Tral area of south Kashmir's Pulwamadistrict was handed over to his family for last rites today morning.

An official said that the gunfight broke out after a jointteam of the army and the SOG launched a cordon-and-search operation in Dadsaravillage last evening amid intelligence reports about the presence of one of theKashmir's most wanted militant commander Zakir Musa.

A police officer said that Musa turned down offer tosurrender and fired UBGL grenades and opened fire which was retaliated leadingto a gunfight.

The gunfight raged for several hours and ended early Friday,resulting into death of Musa.

Musa, who hailed from Noorpora area of Tral, first joinedthe Hizbul Mujahideen militant outfit in 2013 and went on to become close aideof Hizb commander Burhan Muzaffar Wani. Both worked together to strengthen theoutfit and within years the outfit rose to prominence, recruiting plenty ofyoung and educated youth in their ranks.

After Wani's killing in July 2016 Musa took over thecommand. However, he hit the headlines in the summer of 2017 when in a videomessage he declared fighting for caliphate and not for joining Pakistan orcreating an independent state. He also threatened Hurriyat leadership of direconsequences who he thought were a hurdle in the establishment of caliphate.

However, his views were not endorsed by Hizb leadershipfollowing which he parted ways and formed his own outfit Ansar Ghazwat Ul Hind.

Musa came from a well off family. His father Abdul RashidBhat is a retired assistant executive engineer. His elder brother Shakir RashidBhat is an orthopedic surgeon and his sister Shaheena Rashid Bhat is a banker.

In 2012 he left for Chandigarh to pursue engineering at RamDev Jindal college but left it midway and instead joined militancy.

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