STATE TIMES NEWS
New Delhi/Srinagar: Six terrorists from Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Hizbul Mujahideen were involved in the abduction and killing of a young Army officer in Shopian district of Kashmir and a massive manhunt has been launched to catch them, defence sources said on Thursday.
The bullet-riddled body of 22-year-old Lieutenant Ummer Fayaz from Kashmir was found in Harmen area of Shopian on Wednesday morning, hours after he was abducted by militants from Batpura village.
“We have identified six militants who were involved in the killing of Fayaz. The militants are from Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Hizbul Mujahideen,” a source said.
Security forces are carrying out searches in various areas to nab the six militants, the source said.
Earlier in the day, the Jammu and Kashmir Police suspected that an INSAS rifle snatched from cops could have been used in the crime.
Police had found two empty cartridges of an INSAS rifle at the place where Fayaz was shot dead by the terrorists in Shopian. Inspector General of Police Kashmir S J M Gillani had said, “We had two incidents of weapon-snatching in south Kashmir recently. We have leads that the Kulgam snatching was carried out by Lashkar terrorists while Hizb terrorists were involved in weapon-snatching at Shopian court complex (on May 2). So it could be one of those weapons.”
Fayaz, son of a farmer and an avid sportsman, had gone to attend the wedding of the daughter of his maternal uncle at Batapura, about 74 kms from Srinagar, from where he was abducted by the militants around 10 pm on Tuesday night. On his first leave since joining the Army, he was posted with 2 Rajputana Rifles in Akhnoor in Jammu region. His killing has triggered anger among the locals who demanded action against the culprits. The Army had on Wednesday vowed to punish the killers of Fayaz and said the incident marks a watershed moment in Kashmir Valley as people there will decisively turn the tide against terrorism.
Calling the attack a “dastardly act of cowardice” by militants, Defence Minister Arun Jaitley had said Fayaz’s sacrifice reiterates the nation’s commitment to eliminate terrorism from the valley.
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