3 shops, over Rs 50,000, valuables stolen, Burglars break into Jamia Masjid

Burglars stole over Rs 50,000 cash and other valuables after breaking into a mosque along with at least three shops at main market Sumbal in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district last night, locals and officials said on Wednesday.

The ransacking of the mosque, the place of worship has especially caused shock and outrage in Muslim majority Kashmir.

Salman Mehraj, a local and also a shop owner in Sumbal told Greater Kashmir that burglars have looted cash from the Jamia Masjid’s donation safe at the main market besides striking a readymade shop of Showkat Ahmad Gojri, a grocery store owned by Mohammad Rafiq Shah and a medical store of Abdul Ahad Bhat.

The shop owners claimed that at least 50,000 have been looted from the readymade shop while the toughened glass has also been smashed into pieces.

From the grocery store, some items and cash have been stolen even as the burglars have also broken into the medical shop, they said.

An official said that a forensics team along with the local police arrived at the spot and took fingerprints for investigation into the case.

The burglaries come two days after burglars Sunday night broke into three houses in Nowpora area of the north Kashmir district escaping with jewellery and other valuables while one of the family was away for a marriage function.

The locals said the burglars also damaged the windowpanes of two more residential houses in the same locality.

Zahoor Ahmad Lone, one of the victims said that the burglars looted jewellery and other valuables from his house, worth lakhs. Lone said they were on a marriage function the night when the theft took place.

Locals said burglars also barged into two more houses belonging to Dr Makhan Lal and Abid Hussain Lone by breaking window panes in the same locality.

The burglaries have created panic in the area with locals demanding that the burglars be arrested as soon as possible.

Police has taken cognizance of the incidents and initiated investigation.