SRINAGAR, June 2: Special DGP CRPF Zulfiqar Hassan today blamed the militants for killing of the elderly man in Sopore militant attack on CRPF personnel.
The Special DGP while speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the wreath-laying ceremony of the CRPF man said that 65-year old man was killed by militants and not by the CRPF as alleged by the family members.
“He was killed by the firing of the militants. It was an extremely unfortunate accident. I think some people have tried to give it a spin that CRPF took him out of the vehicle and shot him. This is totally untrue. I would say with full responsibility that after talking to everyone, after examining a lot of technical details including cameras. We are very confident of what has happened and I would request people who are spreading this canard that they should blame the militants who were hiding inside the mosque and don’t care about whether a child or an elderly person is there”, The Special DGP said.
Zulfikar said that since militants fired from the mosque, the CRPF was restrained. “They just fire. Unfortunately, the civilian has been killed by the militants firing from the mosque. There is no question of CRPF being involved in this. In fact, CRPF was restrained given that militants were firing from the mosque and did not want any damage to the mosque.”
The Special DG said: “The CRPF party was on duty at a particular crossing when we reached the spot, the militants had already taken the position inside the Masjid and they started firing on the CRPF party inside. The CRPF retaliated the fire bravely; the role of the boy who was martyred was very significant. His retaliation was effective. While this firing was going on, the private person who came in a car got into the melee. Unfortunately, when he was getting down and was trying to take the child out of the car, he was shot by the militant bullet from the Masjid.”
Zulfikar said that they have examined all the technical details regarding the fire which hit the elderly man. “All of us have gone on the spot and have seen the angle of the FIR. We are very clear technically that this is the bullet of the militant and obviously child was scared and he ran and was rescued by the boy of the CRPF who was there and took care of him till the firing by the militants continued”, he said.
The CRPF officer said that militants were forced to flee away from the rear side of the Masjid. “The retaliation by the CRPF was effective. And we assume, we have found bloodstains and inside the Mosque we have found more than 60 empty cartridges and two magazines. It shows militants had taken position well in time and were waiting in the Masjid for the CRPF party to arrive”, he added.
He requested the Masjid Committees to protect the mosques. “We find the use of mosques for this activity highly repressible and I think we have the highest respect for all the religions and we don’t ever enter into the religious place knowing the sanctity of the place. However, this use, I think this is repeated use of Masjids by militants. I request Masjid Committees and other respected citizens to secure our religious places and don’t allow hijacking of these places by militants.”
Regarding the security of the Yatra, Zulfikar said: “All the security forces -whether it is Army or JKP or other forces are all working in perfect synergy and are still waiting for the details of the Yatra. Whenever details will come, we will prepare for the Yatra and will make all arrangements.”