SWD official shot dead, brother TA jawan survives

Naka checking stepped up in Rajouri after terror attack on Monday. -Excelsior/Imran
Naka checking stepped up in Rajouri after terror attack on Monday. -Excelsior/Imran

Militants strike in Rajouri village

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Apr 22: In an act of targeted killing, unidentified militants gunned down a Social Welfare Department (SWD) Junior Assistant while his brother, a jawan in Territorial Army, had a miraculous escape, outside their house at village Kunda Topa, about two kilometers from Shahdara Sharief in the border district of Rajouri tonight.
Rajouri district is part of Anantnag- Poonch-Rajouri Parliamentary constituency which will go to polls in third phase on May 7.
Reports said two militants had laid ambush outside the house of TA jawan Mohammad Tahir Choudhary alias Lal Hussain, posted in Thannamandi who had come to his house on leave, and opened firing when his brother Mohammad Razaq, 40, son of late Mohammad Akbar, was inching close to the house after offering prayers in the village mosque at Kunda Topa, at about 8.50 pm.

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One of the militants opened firing from point blank range on Razaq leading to his on spot death. The TA jawan, who was also nearby, heard the sound of firing and managed to survive by taking shelter in the darkness.
Father of Razaq, Mohammad Akbar, was also killed by the militants about 20 years back in the same area. Akbar was working in the Social Welfare Department and Razaq was given job by the Government on compassionate grounds in the same department. One of the brothers of Razaq is an Assistant Executive Engineer (AEE).
“Target of the militants was the TA jawan,” the sources said, adding he returned to the house after police parties reached the spot and the area was cordoned off.
Body of Razaq has been shifted to hospital for post-mortem.
Reports said he had died on spot after being fired upon by the militants from point blank range.
The militants were reportedly two in numbers and managed to escape after the killing.
Sources said the militants appeared to have conducted recce of the village and were aware that the Territorial Army jawan had come to his house on leave. Their target was obviously the TA soldier.
Police, Army and paramilitary officials and jawans reached the spot and cordoned off the area. Searches have been launched in the area to nab the militants.
This was first terror attack in the border district of Rajouri this year.
Last year, a series of attacks took place in Rajouri and Poonch districts in which 20 soldiers sacrificed their lives while seven civilians were killed at Dhangri. Nearly 30 terrorists were eliminated by the security forces in the twin districts last year including on the Line of Control (LoC).
Campaigning has been in full swing in Anantnag-Poonch-Rajouri Parliamentary constituency which will go to polls on May 7.
Mehbooba Mufti (PDP), Mian Altaf (NC), Zaffar Manhas (Apni Party) and Muzaffar Parrey (DPAP) are among notable candidates in the fray from Anantnag-Poonch-Rajouri seat.