Pampore attack

CM says such incidents defaming JK

Parampore-attack An Indian paramilitary personnel adjusts the national flag covering the coffin of a colleague killed in an ambush during a ceremony in Srinagar | AFP

Paying tributes to the CRPF jawans killed in the Pampore attack, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Sunday said such incidents are only "defaming" Kashmir while keeping potential investors and tourists away from the state.

The Chief Minister laid floral wreaths on the coffins of the eight CRPF personnel killed in the militant attack on their convoy at Pampore on Srinagar-Jammu National Highway Saturday.

She said targeting security forces personnel who were only doing their duty was "condemnable".

"This is a fasting month when people should be seeking forgiveness and expiation for past sins. This is the time when we should be making sure not to hurt others. This kind of attack where you are affecting families by snatching their bread earner is condemnable.

"Nothing can be achieved by this.... We are only defaming Kashmir and the state by these acts. We also deal a set back to the religion we practice," Mehbooba told reporters.

She said the militants were also giving a set back to tourism of Kashmir. "People from many countries have started arriving but this would send a wrong signal about the situation here," she said.

The Chief Minister said such attacks also deprived Jammu and Kashmir from its share of development witnessed in the rest of India.

"Today there is atmosphere of development. India is attracting lot of investments in infrastructure development and healthcare but when it comes to Jammu and Kashmir, the investors shy away because of these incidents. The worst sufferers of these attacks are people of Jammu and Kashmir," she said.

Director General of Police K Rajendra Kumar downplayed suggestions that the CRPF casualties could have been avoided in view of prior intelligence inputs and said the attackers were neutralised due to alertness of the jawans and intelligence inputs.

"It is a desperate act by the terrorists. You must have seen over the past few days the attacks at Anantnag, Bijbehara or Pampore, these are desperate acts. Over the past six months, many terrorists and their leadership have been eliminated," he said.

"The CRPF personnel were returning after doing their duty and in such cases they become sitting ducks. In earlier attacks, the militants managed to escape but yesterday, our jawans were alert, there were intelligence reports which led to neutralising of terrorists. They could not escape," Kumar said.

Asked if there was any militant involved in Saturday's attack on the loose, the DGP said, "We are investigating the case. We are looking at all possible angles and links and we will get them, we will get the perpetrators to the book."

On the forthcoming Amarnath Yatra which begins on July 2, Kumar said, "We will take all steps necessary for safe and secure environment for smooth conduct of the yatra."

On infiltration of militants from across the Line of Control, the DGP said while "some infiltration has taken place, JK police and security forces are all prepared and geared up to handle any sort of situation".

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