Amidst increasing incidents of terrorists targeting security forces from mosques in Kashmir, the inspector general of police (Kashmir) Vijay Kumar on Monday said that the terrorists are misusing mosques for carrying out attacks and appealed the public, mosque management, civil society and media to condemn such acts.

IGP’s appeal came following the recent encounter during which terrorists entered a mosque in Shopian. The local Imam and brother of one of the terrorists were sent in the mosque to convince them to surrender but the effort remained futile.

“Terrorists have misused mosques for terror attacks in Pampore on 19 June, 2020, Sopore on 1 July, 2020, and Shopian on 9 April, 2021. General public, Masjid Intizamia, civil societies and media should condemn such acts,” the IGP tweeted.

It is worth mentioning that on 19 June last year, the security forces neutralised two terrorists during a fierce encounter in south Kashmir’s Pampore where they took shelter in the Jamia Masjid from where they targeted a joint team of the Army, CRPF and Police. The terrorists were ultimately shot without causing any major damage to the mosque.

On 1 July last year, a CRPF jawan and a 65-year-old civilian were killed when terrorists fired at them from the attic of a mosque in Sopore in north Kashmir. Besides, three other CRPF personnel were injured.Two of the 5 terrorists on 9 April entered the mosque in south Kashmir’s Shopian from where they fired at the security forces. All 5 were neutralized without any damage to the mosque where the security forces exercised maximum restraint.

The IGP also asked the parents of the newly-recruited terrorists in Kashmir to make continuous appeals to their children to shun the path of violence and not confine themselves to the last appeal when their children are trapped in an encounter.

Lt. General Pandey said that cooperation of the civil society was necessary for breaking the cycle of violence in the south and central Kashmir where social and on-line media was being misused to recruit and radicalize the youth. Connect between the civil society and security forces was also necessary to meet the challenge.