Conflicts & War

2 teachers shot dead inside school in Indian Kashmir

Srinagar, India, Oct 7 (EFE).- Unidentified attackers shot dead two teachers, including a woman, from the minority Hindu and Sikh communities inside their school in Kashmir Thursday, police said, the latest in a series of targeted killings in the troubled Himalayan region.

Police blamed Islamist militants fighting against Indian rule for the targeted killings in the heart of Srinagar, the summer capital of the region.

A police officer told EFE that militants walked into the school in the Eidgah area of the old city and shot at its principal and a teacher.

Their colleagues rushed them to a hospital where doctors declared them brought dead, the officer said.

The police officer refused to identify the slain teachers immediately, pending information to their families.

But he said the woman was from the Sikh community and the male teacher was a Hindu.

Police said they cordoned off the area to launch an operation to nail the attackers.

Schools are generally closed for students in the Kashmir Valley due to the coronavirus pandemic but the government has ordered teachers to resume their duties.

The killings came about 36 hours after unidentified assailants fatally shot three civilians, including a prominent chemist from the minority Hindu community, in the disputed region on Tuesday evening.

Police said “terrorists” fired upon ML Bindroo, 68, from point-blank range inside his medicine shop in the business hub of Srinagar.

About 30 minutes later, armed men struck in a congested Downtown area of Lal Bazar in Srinagar, killing a non-local street food vendor from the eastern state of Bihar.

Police identified him as Virender Paswan, who sold “Paani Puri,” a traditional Indian snack on his handcart.

In the third incident on Tuesday night, militants fatally shot a taxi driver, Mohammad Shafi Lone, in the northern Hajin area.

Earlier on Oct 3, two more civilians were shot dead by suspected militants in Srinagar.

The spate of was targeted civilian killings has sparked widespread outrage in the valley.

“Another set of targeted killings, this time of two teachers in a govt school in Eidgah area of the city. Words of condemnation are not enough for this inhuman act of terror,” former chief minister Omar Abdullah tweeted.

Another former chief minister, Mehbooba Mufti, said she was disturbed “to see the deteriorating situation in Kashmir where a minuscule minority is the latest target.”

She said the claim of the federal government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi “of building a Naya (new) Kashmir has actually turned it into a hellhole.”

“Its sole interest is to use Kashmir as a milch cow for its electoral interests.”

The idyllic Kashmir territory is the only Muslim-majority region in India.

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