Why Are Kashmiri Militants Killing Local Policeman?

There has been a surge in attacks on Kashmiri Policemen by Militants. Why have Kashmir Militants started to target local cops?

Kashmiri-Militant
Kashmiri Militant Junaid-Matoo was killed in an encounter with the Indian security forces.

One of the most wanted Kashmiri Terrorist and Top Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) commander Junaid Mattoo, along with his associate were killed in an encounter with the Indian security forces in Bijbihara, Anantnag District of South Kashmir. Mattoo who had a reward of INR 10 Lacs was bottled-up for almost eight hours with two other local Kashmiri militants. Both the militants were eventually killed in a joint encounter with Indian Army, SOG of Jammu and Kashmir Police and the Central Reserve Police Force. The third militant is believed to have escaped.

In a shocking incident in Anantnag district of Kashmir, militants attack the local Kashmiri Police team on Friday. Six police officers including the Station Head Officer (SHO) of the Jammu and Kashmir Police were killed in this attack. The incident happened around sixty miles away from Srinagar, where the militants ambushed the police vehicle. All the policemen died on the spot. Lashkar-e-Taiba has taken responsibility for the attack, according to local news reports.

Kashmir-Militant-Tweet-Omar-Abdullah
Former Jammu and Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah tweets about Kashmir Militant attack

In the last 24 hours, eight police officers of Jammu and Kashmir Police have been killed by Pakistan-backed Kashmiri Militants. There was an instant reaction from the politicians including former Jammu & Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah. He said “It appears that South Kashmir is slipping from the hands of the state government. I hope someone in Delhi awakens soon.

Why are Militants Targeting Local Kashmiri Police

After a continuous and successful military operation against Pakistan-backed Kashmiri Militants, the terrorist organisations have been under tremendous pressure to avenge the death of fellow comrades. After the elimination of flamboyant Kashmiri militant Burhan Wani, Indian forces also managed to eliminate their next leader Sabzar Ahmed Bhat, who replaced Zakir Musa as the Hizbul leader.

SOG-Kashmir
The Special Operations Group (SOG) of Jammu and Kashmir Police actively fight Militants in Kashmir alongside the Indian Army

With the encounter of top commander Junaid Mattoo from LeT which was jointly conducted by the Indian security forces, along with SOG of Jammu and Kashmir Police, Kashmiri militants were looking for a quick revenge. Attacking the local J&K Police was an easier option as they were not as heavily armed as the Indian army, and were comparatively easy targets.

Additionally, Kashmiri Militants have usually refrained from attacking the local cops, as this would have created a rift between the close-knit Kashmiri community. However, off-late, militants have been brazenly targeting the Kashmir Police, especially their anti-terror squad, the Special Operations Group (SOG)

Internet Suspended in Kashmir

The ongoing militancy and killing of protestors/stone pelters ignited the usual protests in the Kashmir Valley. More that 30 stone pelters were injured in various parts of Kashmir including the capital Srinagar. Internet services were suspended in South Kashmir, which is considered the hub of militancy. All educational institutions canceled their major examinations, as the government was likely to impose curfew like restrictions to restrain the protests.

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Nitin holds a Post Graduate Degree in Mass Communication and Masters Degree in Management from a prestigious British University. Nitin primarily writes on South Asian Politics including India-Pakistan Relations, Jammu, and Kashmir, Indian Domestic Politics etc. Prior to associating with EurAsian Times, Nitin has been writing various blogs, articles, stories, and he loves writing on Kashmir affairs.