A police constable was shot dead by suspected militants at his residence in Pulwama early on Friday, the police said. This is the second killing in Kashmir in the last 24 hours.
SPO Reyaz Ahmad Thoker was attacked in his home in Gudroo village and was shifted to the Army’s 92 base hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries. A wreath-laying ceremony was conducted in the Pulwama district, where top police and paramilitary officials paid tributes to the SPO.
This comes a day after Rahul Bhat, a Kashmiri Pandit who worked at the tehsil office at Chadoora in Kashmir's Budgam district, was killed on his office premises.
On May 8, another police constable Ghulam Hassan Dar was shot dead by suspected militants in Srinagar.
Kashmiri Pandits Stage Protests
Massive protests by Kashmiri Pandits erupted in various parts of Jammu and Kashmir on Thursday night. The protesters, including government officers and their families, demanded that the Lieutenant Governor's administration ensure that their community is safe in the Valley.
Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir Manoj Sinha met the family members of Bhat to offer his condolences. He strongly condemned the "barbaric killing" and said that those "behind this despicable attack will not go unpunished."
National Conference (NC) vice-president Omar Abdullah, while condemning the killing of the policeman in Pulwama on Friday, said targeted killings continued unabated in the Valley.
"Rahul in his office yesterday, Riyaz Ahmad Thoker, a SPO with J&K police, in his own home today. Targeted killings continue unabated. I can’t condemn this killing strongly enough. May Allah grant Riyaz place in Jannat [sic]," he said.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut attacked the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government and said, "Don't know how many Kashmiri Pandits returned to Kashmir in last seven years. Home Minister needs to think seriously about this. Let's not keep pointing fingers at Pakistan, but see what can we do for Kashmiri pandits," ANI reported.
He added, "If even after the abrogation of Article 370 from J&K, Kashmiri Pandits are not returning and those living in Kashmir are not safe. You (Centre) have to take tough decisions to end this atmosphere of instability that is building in J&K."
Congress leader Randeep Surjewala, too, condemned the two killings, stating, "The ugly face of terrorism stands in the way of rehabilitation and security of Kashmiri Pandits. The BJP Government must act swiftly & decisively."