An irate mob on Friday lynched a senior police officer Deputy Superintendent Mohammed Ayub Pandith near Jamia Masjid in Nowhatta area of Jammu and Kashmir’s capital Srinagar after he allegedly opened fire at a group of people who caught him clicking pictures near a mosque. Three people were injured in the firing. The incident happened during prayers at around 12 am. Curfew has been imposed in the area.
The deceased was allegedly making a video of stone pelting by locals, and objecting to this, the violent mob attacked him. Ayub opened fire through his service pistol in his own defence after the situation became out of control, according to the news agency ANI.
Police reinforcements were rushed to the area to restore normalcy. As the officer was not in uniform, the police identified him after his family called his mobile phone, according to NDTV.
PTI quoting police sources said, “People tried to catch the man who allegedly fired several shots from his pistol, injuring three persons. The irate mob then caught hold of him and stripped him naked before stoning him to death.”
Jammu and Kashmir police in a statement said, “Another police officer sacrificed his life in the line of duty. DySP Mohammed Ayub Pandith of Security attacked and beaten to death by a mob at Nowhatta last night.”
Immediately after the incident, Ayub’s body was taken to police control room for identification and other legal procedures. The situation in the old city has turned tense following the incident, police sources said.
Muslims across Kashmir were observing Shab-e-Qadr (the night of power) with night-long prayers and supplications being made inside the mosques and shrines of the valley.
As a precautionary measure, the authorities have already announced restrictions on the movement of people in seven police station areas of the city.
A wreath laying ceremony will be held for the slain officer on Friday at 11 am, said ANI.