Anantnag: The 25-year-old man killed by unidentified gunmen on Wednesday afternoon in Pulwama was “technically a civilian” for he had deserted his training in September last year, the army said on Wednesday.
Showkat Ahmad Naik, son of Muhammad Yousuf Naik, a resident of Pinglena village in Pulwama district, was shot at from point-blank range and died on the spot.
The incident, as per police, took place at about 2:30 PM Wednesday afternoon.
“He had ventured out of his home when militants attacked him and shot him in his head,” a senior police official said, adding that Naik died on the spot.
The official said that the body of the slain was handed over to his family following medico-legal formalities.
“The area was also cordoned off and searches were conducted to try and nab the attackers,” the official said. “A case has been registered and investigation has been taken up.”
Following reports that the killed man was a former army soldier, Srinagar-based army spokesperson Colonel Rajesh Kalia told the press that Naik was an army deserter and technically a civilian.
“He was inducted in January 2018 and joined the regimental centre in March. But in September last year he went on a three-day leave and never returned,” Kalia said.
Kalia said that Naik was declared a deserter by the army.
“So technically he was a civilian for we do not have anything called ex-recruits,” Kalia said.
Naik’s killing came less than a month after four army men, 3 militants, a police head constable and a civilian were killed in a gunfight in Pinglena village.
DIG South Kashmir Amit Kumar, a Commanding Officer of the army, and a Lt Col were among nine others injured in the 19-hour-long gunfight.