Srinagar: Hizbul Mujahideen commander Sabzar Ahmad Bhat was buried in his village in Tral on Sunday, a day after the 27-year-old was killed in a gun fight with government forces in south Kashmir.
Bhat was the face of the home-grown militant organisation and was believed to have succeeded Burhan Wani.
Burhan’s father Muzaffar Wani was among the thousands of mourners, including slogan-shouting women, who defied curfew to attend the funeral in Rathsuna village.
Both Sabzar and Burhan came from Tral and were close friends, sources said. They were among a group of young, tech-savvy militants who used social media to reach out to people, especially the young.
The gathering was not as big as the one for Burhan’s funeral. The government restricted movement of people and shut down mobile internet services to prevent a repeat of violence that rocked Kashmir after Burhan’s death.