18 January, 2021

Bloody Clean-up

The killing of 23 militants in the complex may provoke a backlash 

Bloody Clean-up

VIRTUALLY all shades of political leaders in Srinagar describe it as a mindless massacre. The predawn swoop on March 30 by the Special Operations Group (SOG) of the Jammu and Kashmir Armed Police (JKAP) on a group of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) militants cooped up in a house in the Hazratbal complex in Srinagar left all 23 militants inside dead. With this, practically the entire Sidiqi faction of the JKLF, including its leader Shabir Sidiqi, has been eliminated. 

Unlike the earlier action in Hazratbal on March 24, when nine JKLF militants and two JKAP policemen were killed in an exchange of fire, this time around there is a wave of sympathy for those dead. The popular perception is that the police just executed a predetermined action plan.

In a sudden change of tack, the All Party Hurriyat Conference (APHC)—which had after the March 24 shootout in Hazratbal dismissed the entire incident as a "drama enacted by India to wriggle out of elections in Kashmir"—was quick to condemn the killings. The Hurriyat's revised stand is that...



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