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J&K: Hizbul killed BJP leader, wanted to create communal tension

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    Jammu, Nov 3: The preliminary round of investigations conducted into the killing of a BJP leader in Jammu and Kashmir suggests that the Hizbul Mujahideen was behind the incident.

    Anil Parihar

    The motive according to investigators prima facie suggested that the Hizbul Mujahideen under the directions of Pakistan wanted to create communal tension in the Valley. The outfit also wanted to send out a strong message to the BJP, officials feel.

    Also Read | 15 terrorists had moved into Kishtwar, days before BJP leader was killed

    Anil Parihar, the BJP's J&K unit secretary and his brother were gunned down in Kishtwar town of Jammu division on Thursday, when they were returning home from work.

    The investigations also show that pistols were used to kill the two persons. The Hizbul Mujahideen, which has often complained about the lack of sophisticated weapons had recently spoken about the use of pistols in their operations. They had also suggested that Pakistan is not aiding them enough where the weapons are concerned. This attack could have also been a message to Pakistan to suggest that the Hizbul Mujahideen is still relevant in the Valley.

    On Friday, the police had also questioned two personal security officials of the BJP leader.

    A Special Investigation Team has been constituted to probe the case. The police has detained two personal security officials -- Om Prakash and Sahil Kumar -- who are being questioned, Senior Superintendent of Police Kishtwar Rajinder Gupta said.
    The tragedy could have been averted had the officials been with him, the police said.

    "The SIT has been constituted by police to probe the killings. It is headed by Assistant Superintendent of Police Prabeet Singh," Deputy Commissioner Kishtwar Angrez Singh Rana said.

    "We urge all the political leaders and protected persons to keep their PSOs (personal security officials) with them and do not allow them leave them unguarded," he added.

    In this backdrop, one must take note of an Intelligence Bureau report, which spoke about heavy movement of terrorists in Kishtwar in the past 15 days. The report spoke about the movement of 15 terrorists in the area. They had moved in from Anantnag district of South Kashmir into Kishtwar.

    Also Read | Army on standby in J&K after BJP leader, brother shot dead

    There are several aspects to the ongoing probe. The police suspect that this could have been an act of terror ahead of the November 17 panchayat elections. Various reports have suggested that Pakistan and its terrorists would up the ante. Moreover several terror groups have been trying to target and disrupt the elections. The J&K administration had said that Pakistan is particularly upset that the election process is underway and was also successfully completed where the urban local body polls were concerned.

    Following the killing the Army was told to be on standby. The police were expecting violent protests and as a precautionary measure, imposed curfew in the Muslim majority town. The police say that it would be too early to comment on the motive, but according to divisional commissioner of Jammy, Sanjeev Verma, it was a subversive attack.

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