IED was planted in govt school building, blast happened ahead of convoy movement
Anantnag: A powerful explosion from an IED (improvised explosive device) planted in a school building along the Srinagar-Jammu national highway in Shamsipora area of Kulgam district left four army men seriously injured, one of whom succumbed to his injuries at the army’s base hospital in Srinagar, when the army men were conducting a sanitisation drill for convoy movement on Wednesday morning.
The injured army men were identified as Deepak Kumar, Havaldar Sameeka, Methil Barl and Kan Singh. “Kumar is believed to have died after the four of them were shifted to 92 Base Hospital in Srinagar,” a police source told Kashmir Reader.
Army officials told news agency PTI that one of the soldiers had succumbed to injuries at the army hospital.
Sources in the police told Kashmir Reader that the militants had planted an IED in a school building along NH-44. “The IED exploded while an army team was carrying out the mandatory sanitisation drill in the area ahead of convoy movement this morning,” the sources said.
A highly placed police source said that the explosion took place at about 10:10 AM. “It was a powerful explosion and left the government school building heavily damaged as well,” the police source said. “The injured were rescued immediately and shifted to the 92 Base Hospital in Srinagar.”
The police official acknowledged that this was the first militant attack of the year 2021 in south Kashmir. “We are looking into the incident. A case has already been registered and investigation is going on,” the official said.
The incident will be a major cause of worry for the security agencies given the spot’s proximity to the highly sensitive and vulnerable NH-44.
The army, however, said that it was grenade attack carried out by the militants. “Terrorists lobbed a grenade on Army’s Road Opening Party during the sanitisation drill at about 1015 hours today in Shamshipura area of Kulgam. Four soldiers sustained splinter injuries. (They were) Provided first aid and have been evacuated to 92 Base Hospital,” army spokesperson Col Rajesh Kalia said in a statement issued to the media, following the incident.
Meanwhile, following the explosion, a contingent of forces reached the spot and cordoned off the area. Searches were carried out but nothing could be found in the area.
Traffic on NH-44 also remained suspended for a brief while following the explosion.