New headache in Valley: Crowds swelling at militant funerals

According to senior police officers, the new phenomenon has its origins in the glamourised version of militancy symbolised by its modern day poster boy, 21-year-old Hizbul commander Burhan Muzaffar Wani.

Written by Bashaarat Masood | Srinagar | Published:March 9, 2016 3:23 am
The body of Dawood Ahmad Sheikh, a Hizbul Mujahideen militant, is taken for burial Monday. (Source: AP) The body of Dawood Ahmad Sheikh, a Hizbul Mujahideen militant, is taken for burial Monday. (Source: AP)

ON Monday, as thousands poured into Kulgam for the burial of Dawood Ahmad Sheikh, a Hizbul Mujahideen commander killed by security forces in an encounter the previous night, villagers were forced to delay the burial by at least 90 minutes — and conduct three funeral prayers.

While J&K police and the army have achieved significant success against militancy in south Kashmir in recent months, it is also facing a disturbing trend — growing support for militants in the form of a large number of mourners at their funerals.

“It is something that has been happening for a long time now. It is a matter of concern and we are looking into means and ways to control it,” Javed Mujtaba Gilani, Inspector General of Police, Kashmir, told The Indian Express.

According to senior police officers, the new phenomenon has its origins in the glamourised version of militancy symbolised by its modern day poster boy, 21-year-old Hizbul commander Burhan Muzaffar Wani.

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So much so, an officer said, that when militants are trapped, youth help them escape by assembling at encounter sites and hurling stones at security forces.

“This is a dangerous trend. The fact that people are out to help militants escape even by putting their own lives in danger is a real matter of concern. It indicates that something has really gone wrong somewhere,” said a senior counter-insurgency officer of J&K police.

In November, for instance, over 30,000 gathered in Kulgam for the funeral of Qasim, a top Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) commander and Udhampur attack mastermind. Residents of Kulgam even observed a shutdown for three days to protest his killing by security forces.

“This is a serious issue for us and it seems that a third generation is getting attracted towards the gun,” a top police officer told The Indian Express. “For quite sometime now, people in the valley had started to de-legitimise the gun. But what is happening now, is bringing back the relevance of gun as a medium of resistance. It is a big worry for us,” he said.

Qasim’s funeral, in fact, forced J&K police to change their strategy of handing over the bodies of Pakistani militants to local residents for funerals, and revert to burying them close to the Line of Control (LoC).

Police have also issued an advisory asking people to stay away from encounter sites while the state government has banned the assembly of civilians in a radius of two and-a-half kilometres of such locations.

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  1. S
    Self.Annihilation.of.brahmins.have.started
    Mar 9, 2016 at 3:40 am
    Takshashila was the birth place of mythological scoundrel character chanakya. That is an evidence of the path of migration of arya brahmins, scoudrels they too. It is said that chanakya himself wrote in his biography that he was born to a woman who was rescued from being raped by a per by. And as a reward for the rescuer, she submitted herself to him and the product was chanakya. That is in his own words, like father of all brahmins Subramanian Swamy claiming,proudly, hat his mother does not even know who his father was/is/would be. Chanakya was such a scoundrel, even as a mythological character, that he is credited with poisoning the king over a long period and brahminically justifying that poisoning to develop immunity. Coming to the point, BRAHMINS ARE THE REAL ALIENS TO SOUTH ASIA, NOT THE KASHMERE PEOPLE. So all brahmins, reign in yourselves ELSE a Hitler will arise soon for you. It's just matter of time.
    Reply
  2. M
    maginary
    Mar 9, 2016 at 3:08 am
    Is mourning a dead such a big thing as to report? Zip up you chatter mouths!
    Reply
    1. S
      Southie
      Mar 9, 2016 at 2:47 am
      If China had not occupied Tibet, indics would have. What right does the indics have to occupy Kashmir.
      Reply
      1. I
        IslamForFooools
        Mar 9, 2016 at 3:32 am
        Attack Kashmiri landa s if they are working in your state in your neighbourhood
        Reply
        1. I
          IslamForFooools
          Mar 9, 2016 at 12:11 am
          Destruction is aim of Muslims and Islam and of course burkha dutt
          Reply
          1. I
            IslamForFooools
            Mar 9, 2016 at 3:33 am
            Mourning for a jihadi terrorist makes all Muslims terrorists and bullets in the heads of terrorists is only way out for human race from islam
            Reply
            1. I
              IslamForFooools
              Mar 9, 2016 at 2:28 am
              Ramm big trucks in crowd , use big big trucks and take as many possible under the wheels
              Reply
              1. I
                IslamForFooools
                Mar 9, 2016 at 12:09 am
                That is real face of Aisha rapist prophet mohemmed of landa musselman. Nothing good can come out of musselman people
                Reply
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