3rd killing in a week: Ex-militant shot dead in Sopore

Unidentified gunmen Sunday shot dead a former militant in Sopore town of Baramulla district, police said. This is the third such killing in the area in less than a week.
3rd killing in a week: Ex-militant shot dead in Sopore
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Unidentified gunmen Sunday shot dead a former militant in Sopore town of Baramulla district, police said. This is the third such killing in the area in less than a week.

Mehraj-u-din Dar son of Muhammad Ishaq was killed near his shop at BadamiBagh in Sopore, police said.

"He was shot from point blank range with a pistol. Two bullets hit his head and two in his abdomen. He was rushed to Sub-District Hospital Sopore, but succumbed on the way," a police official said.

Police said Mehraj was a former militant of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front who was selling chicken in the area for the past 20 years. He is survived by wife and two daughters. "He was arrested by Border Security Force in early '90s and later released," police said.

A senior police official said three persons—who were traveling in Van—asked Mehraj for chicken. "When he started weighing chicken, the gunmen opened fire on him and fled from the spot," he said, adding, the incident triggered panic in the area, with people rushing to safer places.

Reports said the town wore a deserted look on Sunday. "Soon after the incident, people preferred to stay indoors because of fear," they said.

Since May 26, four people have been killed by unidentified gunmen in Sopore area.

Hurriyat Conference (G) chairman Syed Ali Geelani has blamed "secret agencies" for carrying out killings and attacks in Sopore.

Meanwhile, Baramulla district of north Kashmir observed a complete shutdown on Sunday.  The shutdown was called by Geelani to protest civilian killings in Sopore.  Reports said normal life was paralyzed due to shutdown.

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