A senior RSS functionary and his personal security officer (PSO) were killed by unidentified militants inside a district hospital in Kishtwar town on Tuesday afternoon.
Police said Chanderkant Sharma (50), RSS in-charge for Kishtwar and Doda districts who worked as a medical assistant at the hospital, and his PSO, Rajinder Kumar (30), were gunned down by two militants.
RSS Sarkaryavah Suresh (Bhaiyyaji) Joshi has said in a statement: “We are deeply anguished and sad over the brutal killing of Sah Prant Seva Pramukh of RSS Chanderkantji and his security personnel in a terrorist attack at Kishtwar in Jammu and Kashmir today. The RSS strongly condemns this act of cowardice.
“Condemn this act of terror. Seems like part of a bigger plan to incite communal tension. Urge @jandkgovernor to initiate a probe & appeal to people of Kishtwar to maintain peace & harmony,” Mehbooba Mufti said in a tweet.
“Unequivocally condemn the brutal murder of Chandrakant & his personal security officer in #Kishtwar today. There can be no place for targeting political operatives like this. I hope the residents of the area will cooperate with the administration & maintain calm,” Omar Abdullah condemned the attack as he took to his twitter handle.
According to local reports, there were at least three militants — while two used the rear entrance to enter the hospital, the third remained outside. The militants first opened fire at Kumar, who was standing in the crowded corridor outside the Out Patient Department (OPD) of the hospital, and then shot Sharma as he stepped outside his room. They also took away Kumar’s AK-47.
As the attack triggered protests in Kishtwar and Bhaderwah, the Army was called in and curfew was imposed as a precautionary measure. Officials said mobile Internet services have been suspended in Kishtwar, Doda and Ramban districts.
The attack comes days before the general elections at which security is a major concern.