The family of the Ummer Fayaz had pinned all their hopes on him. As he was commissioned as a Lieutenant in the Army in December 2016, his younger sisters were sure of a bright future for themselves too. Fayaz’s kidnapping and subsequent killing also murdered his family’s hopes and dreams. Lieutenant Ummer Fayaz was kidnapped on Tuesday night while he was attending the wedding of a relative. His bullet-riddled body was found on Wednesday morning.
“We sisters used to say that we do not need anyone else as our brother had become an officer and we will achieve many things now. We had felt that he had reached some position,” Fayaz’s younger sister Asmat told PTI, adding that the death of her brother was an “irreparable” loss.
“His killing is a huge loss for us. Our parents, sister, uncle, aunty, two cousins and grandparents – all had their eyes set on him as he had become an officer,” Asmat told mediapersons, wishing that no one ever should have to go through a pain as brutal as this.
“Yes, whatever happened to him was wrong and I want that it should not happen to anyone else. If anyone wanted something, they should have informed us. We are not saying anything except that we are speechless,” she said.
Fayaz’s father, Fayaz Ahmad was at a loss for words as he grieved for his dead son. “It’s a huge loss to the family,” he told a top Army Commander who visited the family on Saturday.
The family was also visited by General Officer in Command (GoC) of south Kashmir-based Victor Force, Major General B S Raju, District Development Commissioner Kulgam Showkat Aijaz and Senior Superintendent of Police Shridhar Patil on the fourth day of mourning, assuring the family of all support.
The GoC told the parents that their son was a brave martyr and that people, even though silent, were with them. The Army commander also handed over ex-gratia cheques to the family. Raju said that no matter which group of militants had committed the crime, it would not be spared.
Born on June 8, 1994, Lieutenant Ummer Fayaz was abducted and killed by terrorists in Shopian district of Kashmir. He was posted in Akhnoor with 2 Rajputana Rifles. For his first leave since his posting, he had come to his home to attend a relative’s wedding. The militants abducted him from the wedding and his body was found on May 10, 2017 in another village.
Hundreds of people marched at India Gate in Delhi in a candlelight vigil for the slain army officer on Saturday in the evening.
Police investigating the killing told The Indian Express that witnesses have said the killers were led by local Hizbul Mujahideen operative Abbas Ahmad Bhat who was wanted for two earlier homicides, including one of a local doctor. However, Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin Friday denied Jammu and Kashmir Police’s statement blaming three members of his outfit for Lt Ummer Fayaz’s killing. “Our militants are not involved in the murder of Lt Ummer Fayaz. Such a killing is condemnable,” he said in a statement to a local news agency.
Poster containing the photographs of three Hizbul Mujahiddeen militants suspected of killing Kashmiri army officer Lieutenant Ummer Fayaz were put up by the police in Shopian township in south Kashmir on Friday.