Thousands Attend Funeral Of 'martyr' Terrorists In Kashmir

29 January 2015
Times of India
M Saleem Pandit

Srinagar: Thousands of Tral residents in Kashmir attended the funeral of two Hizbul Mujahideen terrorists and hailed them as 'martyrs' who fought Indian security forces in an encounter that also left Col MN Rai and Constable Sanjeevan Singh dead in Hardoona village on Tuesday. Soon after the burial of Abid khan and Shiraz Dar on Wednesday afternoon, locals in Tral held protest demonstrations led by several separatist leaders. Pro-Azadi and pro-Islam slogans were raised during the burial. Shiraz Dar was buried at his native village on Tuesday itself. Due to the tense situation in Tral town and adjacent villages, all the shops and business establishments remained closed on Thursday as well. Abid Khan, Hizbul Mujahideen district commander for Pulwama, was the son of Jammu & Kashmir Police Constable Jalal-ud-din Khan. He had joined Hizbul Mujahideen in September 2012 to 'achieve martyrdom', according to a letter he wrote to his father. In the letter, Abid asked his father never to look for him since he had adopted the path of 'Jihad-e-Feesabeelillah'. Head Constable Jalal-ud-din Khan said that he had no regrets about his son's death. 'I am confident that he was on a righteous path; Allah doesn't choose everyone for martyrdom,' Khan said. Abid, a drop-out of second year BA of Government Degree College Tral, returned to his home against the advice of his brother Owais Khan on January 26 at around 10:30 pm. Their father who was not at home that night came to know about his son's return on January 27. In the meantime, the forces led by Commanding Officer Colonel MN Rai arrived and asked Abid's father and maternal uncle to persuade Abid to surrender, Owais said. But Abid vehemently refused even as his uncle fell on his feet begging him to surrender. He locked himself inside the bathroom while his father kept asking him to give up his arms. 'He told me that Allah has decided it for him and shouted 'Allah-u-Akbar' (God is Great),' the father said adding that 'the firing between the two sides started.' Owais said that his brother fired first. 'He told dad to ask CO to be ready and fired upon the colonel and the constable.' Pakistan based chairman of United Jihad Council (UJC) and Hizbul Mujahideen supreme commander Syed Salahuddin paid tributes to the slain militants. In a statement, he said, 'Abid Ahmed Khan and Shiraz Ahmed Dar have laid down their lives for Islam and the freedom of their motherland.' Salahuddin, according to a spokesman of the terror group, said, 'Both the freedom fighters fought bravely with the armed forces and embraced martyrdom. The martyrdom of these freedom fighters amply demonstrates the fact that every Mujahid of Hizb is committed to Kashmir cause and is ready to sacrifice their precious lives to achieve the noble cause.' Chairman of Hurriyat Conference, Syed Ali Geelani said, 'Due to the rigid and stubborn approach of the Indian government, the youth are opting for gun.' Another separatist Nayeem Ahmad Khan called the two 'national heroes'.