Srinagar June 30: Jammu and Kashmir police personnel and their families live under constant fear after the recent spate of militant attacks on cops when they were off from their duties and with their families.
There are over one lakh Jammu and Kashmir police personnel. After attending their duties, they return to their homes and spend time with their families. However, it has been recently seen gunmen have attacked the cops when they were off their duties.
The recent incident took place on Sunday evening when suspected militants barged into the house of Fayaz Ahmad Bhat at Hariparigam Awantipora in South Kashmir, who had been a Special Police Officer (SPO) with the Jammu and Kashmir police.
“When masked gunmen pointed their gun at 50-year-old Bhat, his wife Raja Begum and 22-year-old daughter Rafiya Jan tried to save him by shielding from the bullets. The militants fired indiscriminately and the bullets hit Bhat on his head while bullets pierced into the abdomen and chest of his wife and daughter,” one of their relatives told news agency Kashmir Indepth News Service (KINS).
Bhat died on the spot while his wife died at Government Medical College Anantnag an hour later while his daughter breathed her last the next morning in the hospital.
Bhat’s son 27-year-old Liyaqat Ahmad is in the army and posted at Khrew in his native district Pulwama.
Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Kashmir Vijay Kumar who visited the bereaved family on Monday said when the SPO’s family members had tried to save him, the militants fired upon them too. He said that two foreign militants from the Jaish-e-Mohammed outfit had carried out the attack.
Kumar said that policemen are always under threat for being on the frontline, but targeting their families was nothing short of cowardly.
In the month of June, militants killed three policemen when they were off their duties.
Recently, militants shot dead Parvaiz Ahmed Dar, a J&K police inspector, near Nowgam area of Srinagar city when he was returning home after offering prayers in the Mosque. CCTV footage showed two gunmen fired at Dar from very close range who died on the spot.
On June 17, militants also shot dead a J&K policeman, Javaid Ahmed in Srinagar near his home.
The spate in attacks on policemen has created a fear for cops and their families. “My son who is the lone bread earner in our family has been serving in Jammu and Kashmir for the last over five years. He never caused any harm to anybody. But we live a fearful life that he too may be attacked at home when he comes to meet us on the weekend. If he leaves the job then who will feed me and my two daughters,” mother of a cop from Pulwama told news agency KINS.
Earlier in April, militants disguised as burkha-clad women killed a J&K policeman, Rameez Raja, who was guarding the residence of a local politician in Nowgam, Srinagar. In February, Suhail Ahmed and Muhammad Yousuf, two J&K policemen, were killed during a militant attack in Srinagar when they were having tea at a local Dhaba.