Terrorists shot dead two workers from Bihar and injured another after barging into their accommodation in Kulgam in south Kashmir on Sunday, October 17. This is the latest in a series of attacks on non-locals prompting the police to direct that all such labourers in the Valley be brought to nearest security camps "immediately", officials said. This is the third terror attack on non-local workers in less than 24 hours.
A street vendor from Bihar and a carpenter from Uttar Pradesh were shot dead by the ultras on Saturday evening. So far this month, 11 people have lost their lives in shootings targeting civilians. "Terrorists fired indiscriminately upon #NonLocal labourers at Wanpoh area of #Kulgam. In this #terror incident, 02 non-locals were killed and 01 injured," Kashmir zone Police said on its Twitter handle. Police and security forces had cordoned off the area. The deceased have been identified as Raja Reshi Dev and Joginder Reshi Dev, while Chun Chun Reshi Dev has been injured. All are residents of Bihar, the officials said. The militants entered the rented accommodation of the labourers and fired on them indiscriminately, they said.
In a message flashed to all district police in the Valley, Inspector General of Police (Kashmir) Vijay Kumar said, "All non-local labourers in your respective jurisdiction should be brought to the nearest police or central paramilitary force or army establishment just now." "The matter is most urgent," the message to the 10 districts in the Valley said.
The terror attack drew strong condemnation from political parties across the spectrum. "There are no words strong enough to condemn the repeated barbaric attacks on innocent civilians. My heart goes out to their families because they leave the comforts of their homes to earn a dignified livelihood. Terribly sad," PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti tweeted.
BJP state spokesman Altaf Thakur said the killings were "nothing but pure genocide". "The gruesome murder of non-locals is nothing but inhuman and shows the frustration of militants," he said.
CPI(M) leader MY Tarigami said 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," he said.
Tarigami said mere condemnation is not enough and it was time for all to come forward and unitedly raise voice against these criminals who are committing such heinous crimes.
"We appeal to civil society, political parties irrespective of their political agenda to raise their voice against such barbaric acts," he added.
Amid the civilian killings, Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha had on Sunday vowed to avenge every drop of their blood by hunting down terrorists and their sympathisers.
Sinha said attempts are being made to disrupt the peace and socio-economic progress of Jammu and Kashmir and the individual growth of people, and reiterated the commitment to the fast-paced development of the Union territory.
"I pay my heartfelt tributes to the martyr civilians and condolences to the bereaved families. We'll hunt down terrorists, their sympathisers and avenge every drop of innocent civilians' blood," Sinha said in his monthly radio programme 'Awaam ki Awaaz'.