Kashmir: The Role of a Protestor at Encounter Site?
A militant was killed in Jammu and Kashmir’s Budgam district yesterday (28 March) in a fierce gun battle with the Indian armed forces. The operation ended in the afternoon when the lone militant holed up inside a house was gunned down.
But unfortunately, 3 civilians were also killed during the army operation. They were identified as Zahid Rashid Ganai, Saqib Ahmed and Ishfaq Ahmad Wani who became unintended victims of the gunbattle. They were among the group of youth that was pelting stones at the army personnels in a way to protest, also causing disruption in the operation being carried out.
A group of individuals who choose the range between two entities involved in a gunfight to express their resentment for any reason is a foolish idea. Those who do, risk their life. The line of sight in the gunbattle is essentially the ‘kill zone’. Anything that lands in the range of it invites lethal consequences for itself.
The youth who apparently think they shield the militants by disrupting encounters are responsible for themselves. Those who think this way of protesting is an expression of their hate are foolish to express that at an encounter site.
Many local news media cited this incident as the intent of the armed forces to kill the youth protesting for their rights. It is a sheer ignorance of those people who concur with this interpretation.
The armed forces that act upon the inputs of intelligence agencies have a sole objective to eliminate the ‘terrorist’ only. The people who find disrupting army operations, an ‘act of bravery’ are just irresponsible, mindless youth who have taken their outcry to vandalism and are accountable for the aftermath.