J&K: Terrorists shoot 2 Kashmiri Pandit brothers in orchard; 1 dead
A Kashmiri Pandit was shot dead on Tuesday by terrorists at an apple orchard in Kashmir's Shopian district. His brother was also injured in the shooting. This comes three months after a Kashmiri Pandit—named Rahul Bhat—was killed at a government office in Budgam, triggering protests by the community. Over 5,000 KP employees in the Valley haven't reported to work since then, fearing targeted attacks.
- Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) has been witnessing increased targeted killings since the second half of 2021.
- The majority of Kashmiri Pandits want to be relocated to Jammu till the situation in Kashmir improves.
- Nearly 30 people have been killed as a result of targeted attacks this year, including KPs and security officials. Meanwhile, 28 migrant workers were killed in targeted attacks since 2017.
"Terrorists fired upon civilians in an apple orchard in Chotipora area of Shopian. One person died and one injured. Both belong to minority community. Injured person has been shifted to hospital. Area cordoned off (sic)," the Kashmir Zone Police tweeted after the terrorist attack. The deceased person was identified as Sunil Kumar, while his injured brother was identified as Pintu Kumar.
The Shopian attack is the second on KPs in Kashmir in the last 24 hours. On Monday (Independence Day), terrorists threw a grenade at a Kashmiri Pandit's home in Budgam. Karan Kumar Singh was hurt in the attack and taken to a hospital in Srinagar. Separately, terrorists also injured a policeman on Monday by throwing a grenade at a police control room in Srinagar.
Altaf Thakur, Jammu and Kashmir BJP spokesperson, condemned the terrorist attack and demanded strict punishment for the perpetrators. The Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samaj, on the other hand, has termed the attack as "another bloody day in Kashmir."
In the last 15 days alone, two migrant workers from Bihar, both Muslims, were shot dead in separate terrorist attacks in Pulwama and Bandipore. In June, a bank manager from Rajasthan was gunned down by terrorists at his workplace; the chilling incident was recorded on a CCTV camera. Additionally, a brick kiln worker from Bihar, Dilkhush Kumar, was also killed by terrorists in June.
In October 2021, a slew of targeted killings occurred in Kashmir in a span of five days, killing seven civilians, including a KP, a Sikh, and two Hindus. Consequently, several Kashmiri Pandits evacuated the Valley. Later, the killing of Bhat in May triggered protests by KPs, who questioned the BJP-led central government about whether they had brought KPs back to the Valley to die.