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Five troops killed in Kashmir attack
Publication Date : 14-03-2013
Two suspected Pakistani terrorists, disguised as cricketers, stormed a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) camp in Srinagar in a fidayeen (suicide) attack, killing five of its personnel in the first major strike in the city in three years.
The two fidayeens, who entered the Police Public School ground on the outskirts of the city hiding automatic rifles and grenades in cricket kit bags, were killed after a 30-minute gunfight. The attack is believed to have been carried out by Pakistan-based terror group Lashkar-e-Taiyyaba (LeT).
As many as 18 people, including 15 CRPF jawans and three civilians, were also injured in the attack, officials said.
Immediately after the attack at 10:45 am, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah rushed to Srinagar from Jammu, where the Assembly session is underway and held a high-level meeting to discuss the law and order situation in the state.
Initially, a caller claiming to be the spokesperson of Hizbul Mujahideen called local news agencies and claimed responsibility for the attack, but later withdrew it.
Security agencies believed that it was the handiwork of LeT, as the state Intelligence had warned of such an attack on police and paramilitary camps.
"Prima facie, the terrorists don't appear to be locals, but from across the border and first impressions are that they are possibly from Pakistan,” Union Home Secretary R K Singh said in Delhi.
Under the guise of playing cricket, the militants entered the school ground, where some boys were playing but quickly removed their jackets and lobbed several grenades and fired indiscriminately from their AK-47s concealed in their kits to inflict the casualities before they were killed.
“Five jawans have been martyred and seven (jawans) have been injured,” IGP (Kashmir) Abdul Gani Mir told reporters at the scene of the attack. Luckily, the school was closed due to the strike called by separatists in support of their demand for return of mortal remains of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.
Two AK-47s, five magazines, two pistols with magazines, seven grenades, some Indian currency and Karachi-labelled medicines were recovered from the bodies of the militants, police claimed. T
The incident is the first suicide attack in Kashmir in three years, with the last such strike having taken place on Jan 6, 2010 at Hotel Punjab in Lal Chowk. Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde yesterday said the suicide attack in Srinagar is an indicator that the government has to remain “very alert” in Kashmir Valley.
“We are analysing how the attack took place,” he said, adding that it is difficult to predict when terror will strike. The government suspects that the terrorists who carried out the fidayeen attack on a CRPF camp in the Bemina area of Srinagar today were from Pakistan.
Security agencies had Intelligence inputs that four terrorists had entered India to carry out an attack. “The same input was passed on to all the security agencies in the valley and they were asked to be alert,” said a senior officer. Intelligence sources blamed the LeT for the terror attack on the CRPF camp.