Kashmiri mosques hailed ‘mujahids’ as Indian forces battled pro-freedom militants: report


A large swathe around the Pampore encounter site in Indian-held Kashmir (IHK) resounded with praise for ‘mujahids’ (holy warriors) from mosque loudspeakers as Indian security forces fought Kashmiri militants holed up in a building for three days, the Times of India reported on Wednesday.

According to the TOI report, mosques in localities like Frestabal, Drangbal, Kadlabal and Sempora played recordings throughout Monday eulogising the pro-freedom militants. Slogans like ‘ Jaago, jaago subah hui’ besides pro-Pakistan (Jivey, jivey Pakistan!) and pro-Azadi (‘ Hum kya chahatey: azadi’) blared from the mosques’ loudspeakers.

Hundreds of youth assembled across the rivulet at the site of the encounter in the Entrepreneurship Development Institute (EDI) building, with clashes reported with security forces in their bid to cross the stream to try and physically prevent the security forces from launching combat operation against the pro-freedom militants. Sempora is 15 kilometres from Srinagar.

Police and paramilitary forces prevented the crowd from crossing the rivulet by firing tear gas shells from boats. In return, angry youths pelted cops with stones in a locality near Sempora, said the report.

Indian intelligence agencies, the TOI report said, were taken aback by loudspeakers blaring encomium on the militants.

The entire Pulwama district, including the pro-freedom hotbed of Tral, observed a complete shutdown on Monday in “solidarity” with the holed-up militants.