The police officer who was injured in a militant attack on June 12 in south Kashmir, in which five CRPF men were killed, succumbed to his injuries on Sunday, the police said.
Station House Officer of Anantnag police station, Arshad Khan, was hit when motorcycle-borne militants gunned down five CRPF personnel in an audacious daylight attack on one of the busiest roads in south Kashmir’s Anantnag town.
He was shifted to a military hospital from where he was referred to Sheri Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS), Soura, in Srinagar.
The police said that he was airlifted to AIIMS, Delhi, in the morning when his health deteriorated.
“He was airlifted to AIIMS where he succumbed. He is being brought back,” said deputy inspector general (DIG) of police, south Kashmir, Atul Kumar Goel.
“Our brave heart inspector Arshad Khan who got injured as SHO Anantnag couldn’t make it. May the departed soul rest in peace(Amen),” tweeted Anantnag police.
Doctors at SKIMS said that he had a bullet injury in his abdomen.
“We had referred him to be airlifted to AIIMS. He was very critical with a bullet wound in his abdomen,” said medical superintendent of SKIMS, Dr Farooq Jan.
Two motorcycle-borne militants had driven down KP Road and opened fire at 4.50pm at a contingent of CRPF personnel belonging to the 161 Battalion that was deployed at the spot. The CRPF personnel were on law-and-order duty and part of the Road Opening Party.
Additional forces led by Anantnag SHO Arshad Khan and a Quick Reaction Team (QRT) rushed to the spot, only to face a volley of bullets from the militants, who also hurled grenades at the forces. In the ensuing gunbattle, one militant was killed. Al-Umar Mujahideen, a militant outfit led by Mushtaq Zager, who is currently based in Pakistan, had claimed responsibility for the attack.
According to his colleagues in Anantnag police station, Khan, 40, a resident of Srinagar had joined police force in 2000. He is survived by his wife and two children.
Former chief minister and PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti expressed her condolences. “Terrible news. Nothing seems to stop this endless cycle of violence. My condolences to his family,” she tweeted.
This was the first major strike on security forces since the February 14 suicide strike in Pulwama that killed 40 soldiers in what was the worst attack in Kashmir’s history.
After the Pulwama strike — which occurred on a highway roughly 35km from the spot where June 12’s firing took place — the army and other forces tightened security across the Valley, especially in the restive south Kashmir.
In June 2017, five policemen, including SHO Achabal Feroz Ahmad, were killed after militants had attacked their vehicle in Thujwara area of Achabal in Anantnag.
So far security forces have killed 112 militants this year, including some top commanders of militant outfits in different parts of Kashmir. Many of the militants were killed in south Kashmir. After the Pulwama attack, 84 militants have been killed and 25 security personnel — including SHO Anantnag — have lost their lives.
First Published: Jun 16, 2019 20:52 IST