Shopian encounter: Villagers blame Army for vandalising graveyard where militants are buried

Villagers in South Kashmir’s Karimabad and Gudoora are up in arms against the army and blamed them for vandalizing and desecrating the graveyard at Karimabad village.

Written by Mir Ehsan | Srinagar | Updated: April 10, 2016 1:20 am
J&K encounter, J&K terrorist encounter, Hizbul Mujahideen militants, Hizbul Mujahideen, militants, militants encounter, Jammu and Kashmir encounter, Kashmir protests, Shopian encounter, JK Shopian encounter, india news A police vehicle was set on fire in Karimabad on Thursday. (Source: AP)

Villagers in South Kashmir’s Karimabad and Gudoora are up in arms against the army and blamed them for vandalizing and desecrating the graveyard at Karimabad village where militants who were killed on Thursday are buried.

Army, however, denied the allegations and termed it as a ploy to malign the image of the army by separatists.

On Thursday after killing two militants at Vehil Shopian, the villagers intercepted the police bulletproof vehicle at Muran chowk in which body of a militant was being carried. The villagers hijacked the vehicle and later set it on fire while the body of militant Naseer Ahmad Pandit who was a former police constable turned militant was buried in the graveyard of his native village Karimabad.

The villagers alleged that the army at night came to the village and took away the damaged vehicle and also vandalized the graveyard and desecrated the graves. “This has been done by the army and their agents who are not happy with the participation of huge number of people in the militant funerals,’’ a villager alleged.

Even some villagers alleged that they (army) also damaged an apple orchard in the neighborhood of the graveyard.

On social networking sites, many people reacted on the desecration of the graveyard and termed it as an inhuman act and circulated the pictures of the graveyard. “After yesterday’s (Friday) massive participation in the funeral of Naseer & Waseem in South Kashmir, the desecration of the martyr’s graveyard perhaps by frustrated Indian army only reiterates that our revolutionaries even after death haunt the Indian army. This growing insecurity of India on Kashmir is encouraging,’’ Khurram Parvez, a human rights activist wrote on the face book.

Army on its part strongly termed these allegations as baseless and said the story has been cooked up by separatists with an obvious intent to malign the fair image of the army.

“The Indian Army, during the Kargil conflict, had given a befitting and honorable military burial to even Pakistani soldiers. Desecrating the ‘graves’ of our own youth even if they are misguided is unimaginable for a disciplined force with a proven track record in displaying due dignity to the adversary during and after combat,’’ the army spokesman said adding that such irresponsible allegations are only indicative of intellectual bankruptcy of ignorant and ill informed minds.

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