‘More worrying what might follow in J&K’

The killing of top Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani is likely to throw Jammu and Kashmir into a cycle of deadly violence in the coming days, officials worry.

Updated - November 17, 2021 04:27 am IST

Published - July 09, 2016 11:44 pm IST - SRINAGAR:

Villagers offer prayers during the funeral of Burhan Muzaffar Wani in Tral, near Srinagar, on Saturday. — Photo: Nissar Ahmad

Villagers offer prayers during the funeral of Burhan Muzaffar Wani in Tral, near Srinagar, on Saturday. — Photo: Nissar Ahmad

The killing of top Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani is likely to throw Jammu and Kashmir into a cycle of deadly violence in the coming days, officials worry.

A senior police official told The Hindu that the Kashmiri youth was attracted to Wani because he was “one among them”, who grew up in the aftermath of the insurgency of 1990s and came of age witnessing two violent summers — in 2008 and 2010 — and the subsequent hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru in 2013.

“They are quick takers of the oppression theory and it’s becoming increasingly hard for us to counter it,” the official said.

The police seemed worried by the visible show of anger on the ground. At a hurriedly convened press conference, local police intelligence chief Shiv M. Sahai urged Kashmiri parents to keep their children at home and also expressed concern over the growing “radicalisation” in the State, urging them to join the “mainstream.”

However separatist leader, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, countered Mr. Sahai’s view. “They [government] still think that Kashmir issue is an issue of incentives and its people should come to mainstream leaving their separatist tendencies behind,” said Mr. Farooq.

“The fact is people like Burhan and his whole team are from well-to-do families and they are coming to the movement consciously.”

While speaking to The Hindu last week, Mr. Farooq was critical of the Modi government for “burying” the Kashmir vision of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and abandoning the talks process.

In the absence of a formal contact between separatists and the government of India, former Kashmir interlocutors have also urged caution that Hurriyat leaders were hardening their position, and supporting local terror groups.

On Saturday, Mr. Farooq came out openly on twitter, praising Wani and the other Hizbul militants killed as “martyrs”, suggesting that the violence would continue, with “fresh blood in the struggle”.

Political analyst Gul Wani agreed that Wani’s death would “influence and instigate” the youth in Jammu and Kashmir, unless counter measures are taken.

“Over the period of time,” said Mr. Wani while speaking to The Hindu , “Burhan had somehow become a face of the new phase of Kashmiri militancy and that phase is largely attributed to what you call as certain callousness on the part of the Indian state to not engage Kashmiris politically as far as dialogue process is concerned.”

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