Srinagar, May 1
Suspected militants killed five policemen and two security guards in south Kashmir’s Kulgam on Monday as they looted the cash van of a government-run bank, authorities said.
The victims were killed by the attackers who dragged them out of their vehicles, south Kashmir DIG SP Pani said. The van was dispensing cash to local branches. The van was returning to a bank in the village of Pumbai area, around 70km south of Srinagar, when it was attacked. Militant outfit Hizbul Mujhadeen claimed responsibility for the attack. However, a spokesperson told local news agency that the civilians were shot dead by securitymen.
“We didn’t attack the vehicle with intent to loot the cash. We have enough cash. We condemn the killing of the bank employees and want to clarify that they were shot dead by the securitymen,” Burhanuddin said.
The incident came against the backdrop of spiralling tension in the Valley, which has been reeling due to clashes and street protests by people chanting separatist slogans since the death of a popular militant leader last July.
Earlier in the day, two Indian soldiers were killed by rockets and mortars fired by Pakistan along the southwest of the Line of Control in the Krishna Ghati sector in Jammu and Kashmir.
Kashmir has remained largely paralysed since government forces shot dead Hizbul Mujahideen leader Burhan Wani, touching off months of deadly street protests. The government responded with force, leaving more than 100 people dead.