Jahangeer Ganaie

Arwani in south Kashmir continues to be hotbed of militancy

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Five local militants killed in last two months, two more joined ranks after Aug 05

Anantnag: Arwani village in Bijbehara area of South Kashmir continues to be the hotbed of militancy as five local militants have been killed in last two months and three more have joined militant ranks after August 05, 2019.
As per locals, around one hundred militants hailing from this village have been killed during the last three decades.
They said that since militancy erupted in Jammu and Kashmir around three decades back the village always had a militant in the ranks of those who have taken to arms.
“Since August 05, the overall militancy declined all over the valley but this village saw three boys taking to arms even in such tough conditions,” said an elderly man in the village who wished to remain anonymous.
The three youth who joined militant ranks after August 05, 2019 are Muhammad Ashraf Malik (Sadaam), son of Bashir Ahmed Malik resident of Arwani who according to official sources is missing since 25 November 2019.
Another youth is identified as Nasir Ahmad Bhat son of Abdul Hamid Bhat from Arwani Bijbehara who according to official sources is missing since 25 January 2020 and Shahid Ahmad Dar son of Nazir Ahmad Dar resident of Arwani Bijbehara who went missing in the last week of December 2019, but was killed on 07 January 2020 in a brief gunfight in Sail Chersoo area of Awantipora.
Ashraf according to locals a driver by profession was slapped with PSA for having links with militants and is survived by two brothers and two sisters besides his parents.
Nasir Ahmad Bhat according to locals was a mechanic by profession and was never arrested before he went missing and later took up arms.
He is also survived by two brothers and two sisters besides his parents.
A senior police official while confirmed that both Ashraf and Nasir have joined militant ranks said Ashraf has joined Hizbul while they are investigating about Nasir as the details about him joining a militant organization are sketchy.
Pertinently, besides Ashraf and Nasir, another local militant identified as Owais Ahmad Malik is active and associated with the Hizbul since 2017.
Notably, besides Shahid Ahmad Dar, the other four militants from Arwani locality who were killed in last twenty months include Idrees Ahmad Bhat, Yazil Makroo, Sahir Makroo and Azad Malik.
Azad Malik alias Dada was accused in the killing of senior journalist Shujaat Bukhari.

Jahangeer Ganaie

Jahangeer Ganaie is a reporter and covers regional news and can be contacted ganaie@kashmirvision.in

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