The police have arrested two people, including a local sarpanch, in the killing of a youth, who was also an activist of religo-political Jammat-e-Islami (JeI), in north-eastern district of Ganderbal in Kashmir.
“Two accused persons Ali Mohammad Sheikh and Mohammad Subhan Wani have been arrested. The latter is the sarpanch of Sendhbal village (in Ganderbal),” said Kashmir Inspector General of Police Shiv Murari Sahai.
On Monday, a youth was killed and two others injured when activists of the JeI, National Conference associated sarpanch and his supporters clashed over some religious issue at Sendhbal village.
The JeI has accused the ruling National Conference of pre-planning the attack as part of political vendetta against it. The NC denies the allegation.
“Shabir Ahmad Bhat was killed in a group clash at the local mosque,” said Sahai.
The killing took place in chief minister Omar Abdullah’s home constituency Ganderbal.
“Law will take its own course in booking the culprits involved in the murder. The hunt is on to arrest the main accused. The Police is investigating the case vigorously and have raided a number of places,” said Sahai.
“The police will continue to take all necessary measures for maintaining peace in the area,” he added.
Opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has cautioned government against “pressurizing the police to protect the perpetrators”.
“The cold blooded murder by NC goons has sent shock waves throughout the state and once again exposed the ruling party’s inhuman face,” said PDP spokesman.
The spokesman said it was not just that the NC had tried once again to disturb the peaceful social fabric of Kashmir but it had, in the process, undermined the institution of panchayat as well.
“The panchayat members owing allegiance to this party have set a trend of taking law into their hands and dispensing ‘justice’ in most barbaric and cruel ways,” the spokesman alleged.