Former Ikhwani’s house set ablaze in Kulgam
Anantnag: Militants attacked and ransacked houses of several policemen, including of a senior officer, in parts of Pulwama and Kulgam districts on Thursday night.
The house of a former government gunman (Ikhwani) was also set ablaze in Buchroo area of Kulgam district.
The attacks came a day after a militant’s family in Rampura area of Kulgam accused government forces of thrashing women and children during a midnight raid.
The first incident was reported from Mirhama area of Kulgam district at about 9 PM Thursday evening. Here, suspected militants threw stones at the houses of at least two policemen.
“Stones were thrown at their houses and later windowpanes were smashed. The attackers did not enter the house but shouted threats that the families ask their policemen sons to resign immediately,” a local source told Kashmir Reader.
At around the same time, a police constable was shot at and injured in Yamrach village of Kulgam district.
Following this, a senior police officer’s house was ransacked in Khodweni area of the district, where militants barged into the house and ransacked property.
A senior police official from the district told Kashmir Reader that an FIR has been registered into the Mirhama incident.
“Though there were some reports about ransacking of the house of a senior police officer, that is yet to be ascertained in full,” the official said.
Not long after, houses of several policemen were targeted in Trichal and Naira villages of Pulwama district.
“Houses of at least half a dozen policemen and some CRPF personnel were attacked by militants. The houses were ransacked and the inmates were threatened of dire consequences if they did not compel the policemen to resign,” a local source told Kashmir Reader.
Pulwama Superintendent of Police Chaudhary Mohammad Aslam told Kashmir Reader that facts were being ascertained.
“We have reports of ransacking at one policeman’s house. I have summoned him to my office to ascertain details. Besides, I will be visiting the area later in the evening,” Aslam said.
Director General of Police SP Vaid said that the attacks depict the frustration of militants.
“If true, the attacks are an indicator of how frustrated the militants are. We have been dismantling their support structure and the task is being handled very effectively by the police force,” Vaid said.
Such attacks were rampant in March and early April this year. Houses of dozens of policemen were attacked by militants.
In April, the DGP had issued an advisory to policemen to avoid visiting their homes for a few months.
The house of a former Ikhwani (government-sponsored gunman) was set ablaze by suspected militants late Thursday evening in Buchroo village of Kulgam district. The incident was reported at about 9:45 PM.
Suspected militants fired several shots in the air inside the house compound, before barging in.
According to local sources, militants barged into the house of Bilal Ahmad Bhat (alias Buchroo), son of Ali Muhammad Bhat, and forced the inmates out of the house. “They then set the house ablaze and left,” a local source said, adding that the hue and cry raised by the family made villagers rush to douse the fire.
Though the fire was doused in time, severe damage was done to the house’s interiors, including household goods.
Bilal Ahmad Bhat was not home when the incident took place. His parents and brothers were at home.
Bilal lives in the Ikhwan colony located along the Sangus road in main town Kulgam. It is a guarded colony of former Ikhwanis who have been living isolated from the rest of the population after laying down arms.