In what appeared to be a targeted killing, BSF constable Rameez Parray, who had returned home for a holiday, was dragged out of his house and shot dead by suspected militants Wednesday. The incident took place in Hajin in Bandipore district of Jammu and Kashmir. Police said three members of Parray’s family were also injured in the attack. J&K Director General of Police S P Vaid said: “Three to four militants came to the BSF constable’s residence and started shooting. He was dragged out of his house and shot.”
Parray, 33, died on the spot. Three of his family were taken to a Srinagar hospital with injuries. “Constable Rameez Ahmad Parray, a serving BSF personnel of 73 Battalion, who was on leave has been cowardly killed by terrorists today,” a BSF statement said.
A large number of Kashmiri youth, especially from the frontier and rural areas, serve in the Army and paramilitary forces. For long, they were not targeted by Valley militants. But that seems to have changed.
In May this year, Lieutenant Ummer Fayaz, a young Kashmiri Army officer, was abducted while on leave and shot dead by militants in Shopian where he had gone to attend a family wedding. Commissioned in the Army last December, he was abducted from Batpora Matribug in Shopian. His bullet-riddled body was found near a bus stand in Harmain village the next morning.
In June, Mohammad Ayub Pandith, a Deputy Superintendent of Jammu and Kashmir Police, was lynched by a mob in the compound of Srinagar’s Jamia Masjid where people had gathered to observe Shab-e-Qadr (Night of Power). The police officer lived at Nowpora, barely a kilometre from the Jamia Masjid. He was on duty near the entrance of Jamia Masjid when he was identified as a police officer and attacked.
On the killing of the BSF constable, police sources said it was not clear which militant outfit had carried out the attack. Hajin does have a strong presence of Lashkar-e-Toiba cadre and is turning out to be a new militant stronghold in north Kashmir, sources said.