Shocked by the killing of three colleagues, at least two J-K policemen announce their resignation over video messages

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Srinagar | Published: September 21, 2018 1:25:53 PM

The bodies of three policemen were found in an orchard in Jammu and Kashmir's Shopian district Friday, hours after they were abducted by terrorists from their homes in the early hours of the morning, police said.

Representative Image: Reuters

The bodies of three policemen were found in an orchard in Jammu and Kashmir’s Shopian district Friday, hours after they were abducted by terrorists from their homes in the early hours of the morning, police said. The shock news of the killing of the three men prompted at least two police personnel to issue video messages announcing their resignation from the force.

The slain policemen were identified as constable Nissar Ahmed and two special police officers, Firdous Ahmed and Kulwant Singh.  They were kidnapped early this morning from their homes at Batagund and Kapran villages, a police official said.  He said security forces launched intensive search operations to rescue the abducted men but terrorists shot them dead. The bodies were recovered from an orchard at Wangam.

“We have lost three of our brave colleagues in a barbaric terror strike. Our tribute to the three martyred jawans… ,” a police spokesperson said.  “We condemn this inhuman act and assure that all the culprits shall be dealt under law,” he added.

Police said the residents of Batagund village chased the terrorists and pleaded with them to not abduct the men. The abductors fired shots in the air and threatened the villagers, officials said. The terrorists crossed a river in the area and shot dead the policemen, the officials added.

A Twitter handle purportedly belonging to the Hizbul Mujahideen group has claimed responsibility for the incident. Security agencies also believe that Hizb militants are behind the killings. The killings are believed to have triggered panic in the lower ranks of the police department with at least two policemen issuing video messages dissociating themselves from the force.

“My name is Irshad Ahmad Baba and I was working as a constable in the police. I have rendered my resignation…,” said one of them in a video being widely circulated on social media here.  Tajalla Hussain Lone, an SPO, said he had resigned from the police department on September 17 and was issuing the video to put to rest any doubts that he had done so.

Police officials refused to comment on the resignations, saying they would verify the information.  Hizbul Mujahideen commander Riyaz Naikoo has several times warned local policemen, especially SPOs, to resign from the force, saying that the government was using them.

Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti expressed her outrage on Twitter. “Three more policemen have lost their lives to militant bullets. Outrage, shock & condemnation will be expressed by all of us on expected lines. Unfortunately, it brings no solace to the families of the victims,” she said.

The Centre’s muscular policy, she added, was not working at all with the rise in kidnapping of police personnel and their families.  “Dialogue, the only way forward seems to be a distant dream for now,” she tweeted.

The policemen were abducted nearly three weeks after terrorists abducted relatives of policemen from various places in south Kashmir on August 30. The relatives were later released. At least eight people whose relatives worked in Jammu and Kashmir Police were abducted.

Naikoo had purportedly claimed responsibility for the abductions in a 12-minute video, issuing a three-day deadline for the release of all relatives of terrorists who were in police custody.

The August 30 abductions happened after the NIA arrested the second son of globally-wanted terrorist Syed Salahuddin, leader of the Hizbul Mujahideen group, on charges of receiving secret funds.  The latest round of killings comes soon after elections to panchayats and urban local bodies were announced.

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