Kashmir’s longest surviving militant was also one of the smartest, senior cop says

Abdul Qayoom Najar who was “killed in a gunbattle with forces near the Line of Control (LoC) in Uri sector” was not only the longest surviving Kashmiri militant but also one of the smartest, a senior police officer has said.

Baramulla Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Imtiyaz Hussain  described Najar, a resident of Sopore, as “one of the smartest militants I have known in my 18 years of service.”

“ Very very smart, extremely smart, he would not trust anybody, not even his wife or his brother,” the senior police officer was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

Najar was wanted for his involvement in more than 50 killings of civilians and forces personnel, including that of four policemen in Hygam area of Sopore, in the past 17 years, he said.

He was also involved in attacks on telecommunications towers across the valley in 2015, the SSP said.

A police spokesman said Najar who had been active since 1999 had split from the Hizbul Mujahideen to form his own group Lashkar-e-Islam  after a falling out in 2015.

He was  summoned to Pak-administered Kashmir by Hizb chief Syed Salahuddin to sort out differences and was returning to Kashmir on his directions to take charge of and revive the “Hizbul Mujahideen whose commanders of North Kashmir Pervaiz Wani and of South Kashmir Yasin Yatoo were  killed recently.”

“His return was also necessitated because of wiping out of Hizb from north Kashmir,” the police spokesman said.

SSP  Imtiyaz termed Najar’s killing as a “big success, big achievement, for all of us especially because had he been alive and had he successfully infiltrated into this side, it would have been a big problem for us.”

“ Neutralising him would have been very difficult as he was already heading a huge network in Sopore, Palhallan, Pattan, Handwara areas of Bandipora and Baramulla. We should be thankful to our Army,” the SSP said.

 

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