Other States

Outrage over civilian’s killing in Srinagar

The daughter of Makhan Lal Bindroo during his last rites at his residence in Srinagar on October 6, 2021.   | Photo Credit: NISSAR AHMAD

Family members of the Bindroos, whose father was shot dead inside Srinagar’s famous pharmacy ‘Bindroo Medicate’ by militants on October 5, put up a brave face on Wednesday, saying “the gunmen may have killed a body but not the spirit” of the family.

“My father, Makhan Lal Bindroo, will always be alive in the spirit with which we have been brought up. Mr. [gunman), who shot my father while he was working, if you have the guts, then come have a debate with me. You won’t. You merely know how to hurl stones and open fire,” said Dr. Shraddha Bindroo, the victim’s daughter.

Bindroo’s son said his father “was a principled man who earned a name by selling genuine medicine. He was respected by all in Kashmir for being helpful and friendly. He motivated me to return [to Kashmir] and serve people here. He had no threat as such. Even if he had, he was brave enough to keep his shop open, as he did since the 1990s”.

The Bindroos, a resident of Indira Nagar, were among a few Kashmiri Pandit families that decided to stay back in the Valley in the 1990s, when militancy broke out. They earned a name by emerging as a leading pharmacy in the Valley.

On Tuesday evening, unknown militants barged into the busy pharmacy near Iqbal Park area and pumped around four bullets into his body, leaving the 68-year-old Bindroo dead.

Public outrage

The killing evoked a public outrage in Kashmir. Scores of neighbours and loyal customers visited the Bindroos in Srinagar to express their condolences to the family. Many recalled the generosity displayed by the family during tough times faced by neighbours and the customers.

“Many years ago, my mother had gone to Bindroo Medicate and reached out to her purse only to realise it was stolen. Mr. Bindroo, sensing the predicament of my mother, insisted that she not only take the medicine but also gave her ₹50 so as to ensure her travel back home. We have lost a personality who epitomised our shared values and culture,” Imran Gazi, a local, said.

Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) Mayor Junaid Azim Mattu said a road in the city “will be named after Bindroo as a tribute to his contributions to society”.

Beasts killed him too: Farooq

National Conference president and former Chief Minister Dr. Farooq Abdullah, who visited the family, said, “Bindroo was an upright man and served the people of the Valley all his life and helped poor people. But beasts killed him too”.

Peoples Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti condemned the killing. She said, “With the recent spate of civilian killings in Kashmir GOIs fake narrative of normalcy lies in tatters. An utterly desensitised govt that has devalued human lives and pushed J&K into further peril and chaos by its ruthless policies of collective punishment all in the garb of security.”

Hurriyat chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, condemning the killing, said: “The Hurriyat strongly condemns all killings, which are acts of pure violence against fellow humans and humanity. We appeal to the world community to intervene in putting an end to the daily violence and tragic loss of life in Kashmir by pushing for a resolution of the lingering Kashmir conflict.”

Inspector General of Police (IGP) Vijay Kumar also visited the family.

The police have started investigation into the killing of three persons by militants on Tuesday in multiple attacks carried out within two hours, including two in Srinagar and one in Bandipora.

At least 25 civilians have been killed by gunmen this year, which included two non-locals.

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Printable version | Dec 6, 2021 12:35:30 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/gunmen-may-have-killed-a-body-but-not-our-spirit-kin-of-deceased-kashmiri-pandit/article36854352.ece

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