Hizbul releases photos of gun-wielding Kashmiri youth on Burhan Wani’s death anniversary

On the second death anniversary of Hizbul Mujahideen militant commander Burhan Wani, the outfit Sunday flooded social media with pictures of over one and a half-dozen youth, who have allegedly joined the organisation in the past few months.

The pictures include that of Shams ul Haq Mengnoo, who was pursuing bachelor’s degree in Unani medicine in Srinagar, and is the brother of an IPS officer posted in the North-East. Shams, in his 20s, had gone missing on May 22 and is seen holding a gun with ‘Burhan Sani (Burhan, the second)’ written across it.

SP Shailendra Kumar Mishra, since transferred from Shopian, had on June 28 told HT about possibilities that Shams may have joined the militants. SP Sandeep Chaudhary, said he was not authorised to talk to the media.

The pictures include a dozen names from south Kashmir’s Shopian, Kulgam, Anantnag and Pulwama, four from north Kashmir’s Kupwara, Handwara, and Baramulla, and one from central Kashmir’s Budgam.

A senior officer said it was all part of propaganda from the militants’ side. “It is part of their activity to release such pictures particularly when they were not able to make any impact on Wani’s second death anniversary,” the officer said, wishing not to be named. One of them is a resident of Kulgam, who has done his masters in English and was reportedly pursuing PhD outside before joining militancy.

Another picture is that of Irfan Rashid Dar, a 22-year-old special police officer from Pulwama, who went missing from Pampore along with his rifle on June 26.

The youth’s apparent picture carrying a gun with his name and code name Chota Ghaznavi shows his date of getting active as June 27. Pictures of Awantipora youth Tawseef Ahmad Thokar, who the picture claims is an MSc in mathematics, and another of Adfar Fayaz, have also gone viral.

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