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NEW DELHI: Security agencies on Tuesday identified four terrorists who carried out the civilian killings in Srinagar over the last week. The kingpin – 25-year-old Basit Ahmed Dar – disappeared from his home in Kulgam district’s Redwani in April and had been under the scanner earlier as well.
According to the officials, Dar worked with Abbas Sheikh – the self-styled chief of The Resistance Front (TRF) – an organisation believed to be a shadow outfit of the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba. The four-member terror squad also included Mehran Shalla, a resident of Nawa Kadal, and another man identified as Adil, said officials.
They said that the group of terrorists was involved in the killing of 68-year-old Kashmiri Pandit businessman Makhan Lal Bindroo, school principal Supinder Kour and teacher Deepak Chand.
Security agencies gathered CCTV footage from various locations and joined the dots to zero in on the terror squad that was responsible for the killing of civilians, the officials added.
Bindroo, owner of Bindroo Medicate in Iqbal Park, took four bullets in the abdomen as the terrorists fired at him from point-blank range after barging into the pharmacy on October 5. Two days after the incident, Kour (44) and Chand were escorted out of the Sangam Eidgah Boys’ Higher Secondary School building and shot multiple times by the assailants. While Chand died on the spot, Kour succumbed to her injuries en route to a hospital.
The officials said Dar has been moving around in the city and is accompanied by Mehran and others. It is stated that he took over the TRF operations after the death of Abbas Sheikh, among the oldest face of terrorism in the valley.
A resident of Kulgam’s Rampur village, Sheikh had joined the banned Hizbul Mujahideen in mid-90s. He was arrested for the first time in 2004 and released after a year. In 2007, he was arrested again and spent four years in jail. After his release, he was at home for three years, before going missing again in the spring of 2014. Sheikh was behind the killing of jeweller Satpal Nischal, a non-Kashmiri, earlier this year.
He was gunned down in a swift operation by the Army early this year.
– With inputs from agencies

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