Srinagar: A Kashmiri Pandit government employee was shot dead by the terrorists in his office in central Kashmir’s Budgam district on Thursday afternoon, while a massive hunt is underway to track the attackers.
The deceased has been identified as Rahul Bhat, a resident of Sangrampora, Beerwah.
Rahul was working in the Revenue Department at Tehsil office Chadoora in Budgam.
Rahul was employed under PMs Package and left behind his wife and a 9-year old daughter.
Police said preliminary investigations reveals that two terrorists shot Rahul with pistol.
“Terrorists fired upon one employee namely Shri Rahul Bhat from minority community in Tehsildar office Chadoora, Budgam. He has been shifted to hospital.@JmuKmrPolice,” Kashmir Zone Police Tweeted soon after the incident.
The two terrorists barged into the Tehsil office and opened fire on him. They fired upon Rahul from point blank range and he was grievously injured. Rahul was shifted to a nearby hospital for treatment. He was later shifted to premier SMHS hospital for treatment.
Rahul succumbed to his grievous injuries at SMHS hospital. The two terrorists used pistol for committing the heinous crime. “The injured was immediately brought to SMHS Hospital, Srinagar for treatment where he succumbed to his injuries. Preliminary investigation reveals that 2 terrorists are involved in this heinous crime and have used pistol for committing this crime.@JmuKmrPolice,” Kashmir Zone Police said in another tweet.
Thursday's attack is the latest in a series of targetted attacks on migrant workers and local minorities that have been sweeping Kashmir over the last eight months.
The targeted killings had started in October last year, the victims being mostly migrants from outside Jammu and Kashmir who came in search of jobs and Kashmiri Pandits.
In October, seven civilians were killed in five days, among them a Kashmiri Pandit, a Sikh and two non-local Hindus.
[ TIMELINE ]
Last month, two motorcycle-borne terrorists opened fire at a Kashmiri Pandit shopkeeper in Chotogam area of Shopian district south Kashmir. The victim, identified as Sonu Kumar, survived the attack. In October last year, Kashmir was rocked by a spate of civilian killings, mostly targetted at minority communities. Makhan Lal Bindroo, a prominent Kashmiri Pandit and owner of Srinagar's most famous pharmacy, was shot dead at his shop on October 5.
On October 7 last year, terrorist killed Supinder Kour, a Sikh who was the school principal, and Deepak Chand, a Kashmiri Pandit teacher, inside a government school in the city of Srinagar.
On October 5, terrorists shot and killed three men in separate attacks: Makhan Lal Bindroo, a pharmacist from the Kashmiri Pandit minority; Virender Paswan, a Hindu street-food vendor from Bihar state; and Mohammad Shafi Lone, a Muslim taxi driver. On October 2, gunmen killed Majid Ahmad Gojri and Muhammad Shafi Dar, both Muslims.
Makhan Lal Bindroo: A prominent Kashmiri Pandit, Makhan Lal Bindroo was shot dead at point-blank range at his pharmacy in Srinagar on October 5. He was rushed to a hospital but was declared dead on arrival. Bindroo was 68. He and his family stayed back in Kashmir in the 1990s, even when militancy was at its peak.
Virender Paswan: A street food vendor in Srinagar's Lal Bazar was shot dead the same day Bindroo was killed. Paswan was a resident of Bhagalpur in Bihar.
Supinder Kaur: The Principal of a government school in Srinagar, Kaur, a Sikh, was killed on October 7. Kaur was at the Government Boys Higher Secondary School in the Eidgah area when terrorists stormed the premises and shot her.
Deepak Chand: A teacher at Supinder Kaur's school, Chand was a Hindu from Jammu. He was also shot dead at the school on the same day at around 11 am.
Arbind Kumar Shah: Terrorists shot dead Shah, a fast food vendor in Srinagar, at point-blank range on Saturday. He was a resident of Banka in Bihar. He was 30-years-old. He was selling fast food snacks outside a park in the Eidgah area of the city when he was killed.
Raja Reshi Dev: A labourer from Bihar, Dev was shot dead today in a rented shop he was staying at in Kulgam's Wanpoh.
Jogindar Reshi Dev: Terrorists also shot dead Jogindar, who was staying with Raja Dev, at the same shop today in fresh attacks by terrorists. Terrorists stormed the shop and opened fire, killing Jogindar and Raja - both from Bihar - and injured another person.
A statement issued by the Police said: “Terrorists shot dead an employee belonging to minority community at Tehsil office Chadoora in Central Kashmir’s Budgam District. Senior police officers along with reinforcement reached at the terror crime spot.
At about 1645hrs, police received information about a terror crime incident at Tehsil office Chadoora area of district Budgam where terrorists had fired upon an employee identified as Shri Rahul Bhat son of Bita Ji Bhat resident of Sangrampora Beerwah (A/P Pandit Colony Sheikhpora Budgam) belonging to Minority Community. In this terror crime incident he had received critical gunshot injuries and was evacuated to SMHS hospital, Srinagar for the treatment of his injuries however, he succumbed to his injuries. The deceased is survived by his wife Smt Meenakshi who is a house wife, 05 years old daughter Gungun Bhat, mother Smt Usha Bhat (house wife) and father Bita Ji Bhat a retired sub-Inspector of Police,”
“Preliminary investigation has revealed that two terrorists are involved in this heinous terror crime and have used pistol for committing this crime. Police has registered a case under relevant sections of law and initiated investigation. Officers continue to work to establish the full circumstances of the terror crime while the whole area has been cordoned off with the help of reinforcement and search in the area is going on,”