Srinagar, May 12: Political leaders Thursday condemned the killing of Kashmiri Pandit Rahul Bhat in Budgam.
National Conference (NC) president and MP from Srinagar Dr Farooq Abdullah and vice-president Omar Abdullah both condemned the incident in the strongest words.
"I unequivocally condemn the dastardly attack on Rahul Bhatt. The sole purpose of such dastardly and heinous acts is to vitiate the atmosphere of Kashmir. I condemn the killing in the strongest possible terms. My heartfelt condolences to Rahul’s family,” Farooq Abdullah said.
Condemning the incident, Omar said, “I unequivocally condemn the murderous attack on Rahul Bhatt. Rahul was a government employee working in the Tehsil office in Chadoora where he was attacked. Targeted killings continue and a sense of fear grows unchecked. My heartfelt condolences to Rahul’s family,” he said.
Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC), in a statement, said that the perpetrators of the heinous crime must know that they cannot achieve anything by killing innocent people to satisfy their masters. Killings in any form are unacceptable, shameful and deserve strong condemnation from every section of people, the JKPCC added.
Senior Political leader and upcoming veteran candidate from Chadoora assembly constituency Zaffer Mir (Lasjan) condemned the incident as “horrific”. In a statement he said, “I utterly condemn the killing of innocent employee of the revenue department at Chadoora Teshil office. I urge the government to provide protection to the minor community in Kashmir valley. The perpetrators of violence must be caught. It is dastardly and cowardly and a blot on the community.”
JKPCC president Ghulam Ahmad Mir and various other party leaders have expressed deep shock over the killing of Rahul Bhat by unidentified gunmen and conveyed heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family.
They said the security situation has worsened to the largest extent in Kashmir while slamming the government for failing to ensure safety of people, especially members of the minority community.
Apni Party (AP) president Syed Mohammed Altaf Bukhari said that it is very tragic to see this senseless bloodshed of innocents. Our fellow Kashmiris are suffering due to acts of violence and there seems to be no end to this madness, he remarked.
Such targeted killings of members of minority communities is reprehensible and the people of Kashmir won’t accept this bloodshed, he said.
While expressing sympathy with the family members, Bukhari said people who don't want sustained peace and stability in the valley are the one's behind such incidents.
Bukhari also appealed to the people of Jammu and Kashmir to maintain communal harmony and brotherhood and not fall prey to the nefarious designs of anti-social elements. Apni Party (AP) Media Advisor Farooq Andrabi also expressed heartfelt condolences on the killing of a Kashmiri Pandit. He said that Kashmir is known for its diversity in religion and culture and an attempt to target the minority community is an attempt to disturb the peace and communal harmony of the valley.
In a statement to the press, Andrabi demanded justice and hoped that the perpetrators of the crime are brought to justice at its earliest.
Former Cabinet Minister and AP senior vice-president Ghulam Hassan Mir wrote on Twitter, "Killing of Rahul a Kashmiri Pandit employee at Chadoora is a most detestable act. I strongly condemn it. My whole hearted support and sympathies with the bereaved. RIP."
BJP national general secretary and in-charge of Jammu and Kashmir, Tarun Chugh said this is a cowardly act and killing innocent people has no justification. He said that those involved in this heinous crime should be brought to justice as soon as possible. JKPCC working-president Raman Bhalla said Bhatt had his entire life ahead of him and to know that his life was so cruelly extinguished today is tragic. "Rest in peace Rahul Bhatt," he said.
Apni Party, provincial president, Jammu and former minister, Manjit Singh condemned the killing. He said that the senseless killing of innocent civilians and government officials should stop as soon as possible since it would further lead to a chaotic situation.
In a statement, Jammu Muslim Front (JMF) said that the state administration should come down heavily on the perpetrators of such crimes, whose aim is to destroy the peace in J&K and keep the pot of violence boiling.
Chairman People's Democratic Front (PDF) Hakeem Muhammad Yaseen said that killing of innocent and unarmed human beings was against humanity and against the tenants of religion. He said violence and bloodshed would lead us nowhere except bringing miseries, he said.
CPI (M) leader Muhammad Yousuf Tarigami said such brutal killings are harmful for the society and can’t be justified under any circumstances, he added.
While expressing condolence to the bereaved family, he demanded an immediate end to the killings.
BJP senior leader and chief-spokesperson for party's Minority Morcha, Hilal Jan said such violent incidents add to the miseries and sufferings of people and cannot be condoned by any civilized society in the world.