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Youth held for distributing cricket uniform bearing militant’s name, says family

Brother of a slain militant has been detained by the police in Shopian for “distributing cricket uniform among players and offering prayers at the local graveyard,” according to the family.

“My son distributed cricket uniforms among the players. A cricket team after winning a match last week had offered prayers to my deceased son at his grave. The graveyard is next to the playground. The picture was uploaded. This has apparently become the reason for the detention of my son and eight others. He was held on Wednesday,” Muhammad Hussain, father of arrested Tajamul Imran, told The Hindu over the phone.

Tajamul Imran, whose militant brother Syed Ruban was killed in an encounter in Budgam in January, 2019, was one of the organisers of a cricket tournament in Shopian’s Nazeenpora area. Several villages participated in the tournament.

Around 100 cricket uniforms bearing the name of the slain militant were distributed among the local players.

“There are almost no recreational facilities for the youth living in the southern districts. I am doing my bit for the youth. I distributed cricket uniforms as this was my brother’s favourite game. He was a talented cricketer. We should encourage the youth lest they fall for drugs and other social evils,” said Mr. Imran, in a statement he distributed recently.

When contacted, Superintendent of Police (SP), Shopian, Amritpal Singh told The Hindu that the police were issuing a formal statement in the case.

“Militant hit-list”

The J&K Police on Thursday filed an FIR and started a criminal investigation to identify those who uploaded a “militants’ targets” list containing names of locals.

“On August 29 and September 2, terrorist leaders acting under instruction from across [the border], conspired with some of their overground associates and prepared a hit-list containing names and details of civilians, activists, political workers and security force personnel. It was uploaded online. An FIR has been filed and a criminal investigation has started,” a police spokesman said.

The police said the list was compiled with the help of cyber over ground workers with two motives — use it as a direction to other terrorists operating elsewhere and their associates to target these persons and also to terrorise civilians, government employees and security personnel from serving the public honestly and sincerely, because that would mean restoration and victory of peace, police said.

A criminal investigation backed by technical teams has been initiated and efforts are on to identify both the original offenders who created the content as well as others who are allowing their connections and accounts to maintain the communication systems of the terrorist networks, the police said.

“It is to be borne in mind that in the event of harm coming to any of the persons in these lists, persons propagating them by way of forwarding or copying and re-posting them shall be equally liable variously for murder, grievous injuries, kidnapping and criminal intimidation,” the police warned.

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Printable version | Aug 9, 2022 4:36:48 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/youth-held-for-distributing-cricket-uniform-bearing-militants-name-says-family/article32518656.ece