Shadowy group claims responsibility for attack on migrant workers in J&K
A shadowy organisation has claimed responsibility for the fresh attack on migrant workers in Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday, saying it was carried out as a reprisal while asking them to leave the region.
Raja Reshi and Joginder Reshi from Bihar were shot dead at Wanpoh in Kulgam district while another migrant worker was injured in the latest in a series of targeted attacks in Kashmir that have left 11 people dead this month. The attack on Sunday was the third on migrant workers in two days. Arvind Kumar Sah, a resident of Banka in Bihar, was killed in Srinagar and Sageer Ahmad, a carpenter from Saharanpur, was shot dead in Pulwama on Saturday. Five of the 11 civilians killed this month in Kashmir were migrant workers.
United Liberation Front (ULF) claimed responsibility for the attack in Wanpoh. In a statement circulated on the social media, ULF said the attack was carried out as a reprisal to what it claimed the “lynching of 200 Muslims only in Bihar” in last one year by “Hindutva forces”. There is no record of 200 lynchings in last year in Bihar.
Umar Wani, who claimed to be a spokesman for the ULF in the statement, said: “As already warned all non local stooges to leave our land or get ready for what they deserve. This was retaliatory strikes against the atrocities committed by Indian occupational forces against innocent civilians.”
ULF and The Resistance Front, another shadowy group, earlier claimed responsibility for other targeted attacks on the civilians. Shadowy groups are known to claim responsibilities for such attacks to provide plausible deniability to proscribed terrorist groups. ULF is most likely a front for Pakistan based terror groups, and its claim could not immediately be verified.
HT has reached out to the J&K administration for a comment on the claim and this copy will be updated when it responds.
Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Mohammed Yousuf Tarigami, a four-time legislator from Kulgam, condemned the Wanpoh attack as barbaric and added such incidents have no place in a civilised society. “Killing innocent labourers who have come here to earn their livelihood is a heinous crime. This is aimed at targeting the interests of people of Kashmir and this is happening at a time when the harvesting season is at its peak. Mere condemnation is not enough. It is time for all of us to come forward and unitedly raise our voice against these criminals who are committing such heinous crimes,” Tarigami said in a statement. He appealed to civil society and political parties to raise their voice against such acts.