Valley Burns, Tarigami Nephew Shot Dead
16 January 2006
The Hindustan Times
Srinagar: Terror plots and violence have become part of life in the Valley. Militants on Monday gunned down the nephew of CPI(M) leader Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami in Kulgam area of south Kashmir's Pulwama district. According to sources, militants shot at and wounded Gulzar Ahmed Rather, the CPI(M) leader's nephew, at Tarigam village in Kulgam. He was taken to hospital but was declared brought dead. Meanwhile, security forces are engaged in an encounter with militants at a Congress councillor's house in Shopian town. On Sunday, a PDP councillor and a Congress leader were arrested at Ganderbal in Srinagar for allegedly hatching a plot to kill Mufti Mohammad Sayeed. An official told HT that militants were holed up inside councillor Nisar Ahmad Dahal's residence at Malik Mohallah. It wasn't clear how many militants there were in the house, though. 'A fierce exchange of fire is underway,' the official said. A security officer said all escape routes had been sealed and security forces had virtually laid siege to the area. Local residents said over telephone that two or three militants were still holed up in the house. They said several parts of the town had been cordoned off and civilian movement stopped. 'It is quite frightening. The sound of gunshots and grenades exploding could be heard all over town,' said Manzoor Ahmad, a resident of Hergam. A senior police official said the councillor's house was raided following a tip-off. Inspector-General of Police (Kashmir range) K. Rajindra said vehicles of mainstream politicians would also have to undergo searches like common people as 'this is the only way to curb the menace'. 'The nexus between militants and politicians is not surprising. Every mainstream party has been infiltrated by militants,' said Nizamuddin Bhat, MLC and political secretary of the PDP. 'The disturbing trend, however, is that they had conspired to kill our leader,' he added. On Sunday, the police had arrested PDP councillor Abdul Waheed Dar and Congress leader Mohammad Maqbool Baigh at Ganderbal in Srinagar for plotting to kill Sayeed. Elsewhere in the state, three militants were killed while security forces averted a major tragedy by detecting and defusing a landmine in Baramulla, an official spokesman said.