A pall of gloom descended in Salani village near the Line of Control (LOC) in the Poonch district on Saturday when the body of Rifleman Aurangzeb, who was kidnapped and brutally murdered by militants, was brought home for the funeral.
Aurangzeb was abducted allegedly by militants belonging to Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) and Hizbul Mujahideen (HM) on 14 June while he was on his way home to celebrate Eid with his family.
His beheaded body was found in Gussu village in Pulwama district of south Kashmir. His body also bore bullet injuries on the head and neck.
Emotional scenes were witnessed as the coffin carrying Aurangzeb’s body was brought in the village by army men and given gun salute before the burial. People from nearby villages also turned up at Salani to attend his funeral.
Aurangzeb’s brother, Mohammad Qasim, who is also in the army and is currently posted in Pune got emotional and said that he would trace the killers of his younger brother and take revenge if the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government failed to do so.
He suspected that someone may have informed the terrorists about Aurangzeb’s movement.
Aurangzeb was member of the army team that had on 30 April in an encounter killed “A++” category terrorist Sameer Tiger of the Hizbul Mujahideen that had caused a severe setback to the outfit.
Reports said that men of the 44 Rashtriya Rifles (RR) deployed at Shadimarg stopped a private vehicle at about 9 am and asked the driver to drop Aurangzeb at Shopian from where a direct road leads to Rajouri.
However, armed terrorists stopped the vehicle at Kalampura and kidnapped him.
On Friday, a video of surfaced on social media, in which the militants can be heard grilling Aurangzeb about his army posting and responsibilities.
In the 1.15 minutes video, another terrorist is heard asking Aurangzeb whether he was in Major Rohit Shukla’s team that eliminated Sameer Tiger. Aurangzeb, who is seen having been made to lie down, replied in affirmative and said that he was among those soldiers who shot Sameer Tiger.
Aurangzeb belonged to 4 Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry and was attached with the 44 RR for anti-terrorist operations in South Kashmir.
This was the second incident of terrorists killing a soldier on leave in Kashmir. 22 years old Lieutenant Ummer Fayaz of the Rajputana Rifles was kidnapped and brutally shot dead in Shopian where he had come on leave to attend marriage of his cousin.