The West Bengal government is bringing back 131 workers from Kashmir following the killing of five labourers from Murshidabad district in south Kashmir’s Kulgam by suspected militants, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said in a programme at Eco park Friday.
“A total of 131 workers who had gone to Kashmir are being brought back to West Bengal with the help of the state government. They are from Murshidabad, Dinajpur and Malda,” Banerjee told reporters.
The government has initiated the process and two officials have already left for Kashmir to bring back the workers to the state via train. Sources said the government is planning to send police officers to Kashmir so that proper arrangement can be made for more workers willing to return to their homes in Bengal.
The labourers, who worked in an apple orchard, were asked to step out of their rented accommodation in Kulgam, taken to a nearby area, and then shot dead. The deceased were identified as Naimuddin Sheikh, Murshalim Sheikh, Rafikul Sheikh, Rafique Sheikh and Kamaruddin Sheikh, all from Bahalnagar village in Murshidabad’s Sagardighi.
The Chief Minister also claimed it was a pre-planned attack. “The manner in which they were murdered brutally after being abducted, I think it is pre-planned,” she said while demanding an investigation into the killings.
Hours after the incident Tuesday, Banerjee had expressed shock and sadness. “Words will not take away the grief of the families of the deceased. All help will be extended to the families in this tragic situation,” she had tweeted.