Like previous years, the year 2013 in Kashmir witnessed a number of controversies, scams, disclosures, killings, encounters, and the big news of Afzal Guru’s execution. The year in Kashmir witnessed peace to some extent, however, militants in some dared attacks tried to inflict more damages on Security Forces.
At least 190 persons including 38 civilians, 97 militants and 54 security personnel were killed this year in different incidents. The pay off allegations, Guru’s execution, Gool Incident, Zubin Mehta’s musical concert, Shopian and Markundal incidents, Hyderpora deadly attack, BOPEE Scam, Shallabhatu incursion and infiltration by Chinese Liberation Army into Ladakh were some of the incidents that will keep year 2013 live in the annals of Kashmir history. Here is the recap of the year 2013.
On January 8, Pakistani regulars allegedly ambushed an Indian patrol killing two soldiers one of whom was decapitated in Poonch Sector. The incident led to surge in border skirmishes between India and Pakistani soldiers.
On Jan 11 one Pakistani soldier was allegedly killed by Indian soldiers in Uri Sector of Jammu and Kashmir while on the same day unidentified gunmen killed a Sarpanch Habibullah Mir of the Gooripora village in Boomai area in Sopore.
Unidentified gunmen after abducted a contractor killed him in cold blood on Jan 12 while on Jan 13 Canada based Pakistani religious scholar Tahir Qadri took out a long march in Pakistan.
Chief Minister Omar Abdullah inducted new ten faces in State Cabinet on Jan 15. On Jan 24 India received a major setback on diplomatic front when United Nations rejected the demand of India to windup UN Indo Pak Military Observe Group. On Jan 29 the bus service on LoC was resumed while on Jan 29 a sibling was killed in a blast in Thana Mandi Rajouri.
The month of February witnessed protests, restrictions and curfew in Kashmir as the Parliament attack convict Muhammad Afzal Guru was hanged by Government of India. Guru was executed on February 9 and soon after his execution curfew was imposed all across Kashmir Valley.
A youth Tariq Ahmed Bhat from Batvina Ganderbal was killed in Sumbal after he slipped to death when he was chased by CRPF personnel during the protest against the execution of Afzal Guru. On Feb 12, a teenager was killed in CRPF firing while authorities lifted curfew and restrictions that were in vogue after the execution of Guru on Feb 16.
On Feb 14, Parvaiz Rasool became the first cricketer from Jammu and Kashmir, who played in Indian Premier League (IPL). Getting his maiden call-up for the national team for India’s Zimbabwe tour of 2013, Rasool became the second cricketer from Jammu & Kashmir, after Vivek Razdan, to get selected for the national side.
Kulgam town rocked with protests after the death of a woman at the hands of Indian Army during a search operation on Feb 18. On Feb 24, a Sarpanch was killed by unidentified gunmen in North Kashmir’s Kreeri town in Baramulla.
A Kashmiri scholar from Pulwama district was found dead in mysterious circumstances in Hyderabad on March 3 which sparked widespread protests all across Kashmir. On March 5, a youth was killed in Security personnel firing. Finance Minister Abdul Rahim Rather present Budget on March 6 while on March 8 unknown gunmen shot dead a youth of Kreeri Pattan.
On March 13 militants struck in Police Public School in Bemina Srinagar and killed five Central Reserve Police Force personnel before both of them were shot dead at the end of a 30-minute gun battle. Six CRPF men were also injured in the attack. Soon after the attack, CRPF soldiers killed a 37-year-old civilian in the Sadipora Idgah locality in the old city, sparking protests as locals alleged it was a revenge killing by men of the same battalion who were attacked by the militants.
Militants killed a trooper after attacking a patrol party on March 21 near Nowgam Bypass. On March 24 suspected militants shot dead a youth in North Kashmir’s Sopore town. On 26 March, people protested against the death of a youth who according to locals was picked up by a police party. However, the dead body of the youth according to police was found in a field.
The month of April witnessed a surge in violence and during this month number of lives were claimed in different attacks. On April 9, suspected militants shot dead a Sarpanch in Kolipora in Pulwama town while on April 11, a grenade went off in Army camp in Handwara killing a security person and injuring 6 others. Three labours were killed after they got buried in a snow avalanche on April 16 while on the same day People Liberation Army of China made their entry into Daulat Beg Sector of Ladakh and erected bunkers there.
A militant was killed in an encounter with Indian troops in Sopore on April 18 while on April 26, militants shot dead four Jammu and Kashmir policemen near Haigam Sopore.
A series of tremor shocks rock Chenab Valley on May 1, resulted in the death of two persons. At least 100 residential houses were damaged in the earthquake. On the same day Indian prisoner, Sarabjeet Singh died after an inmate in Pakistani jail attacked him. After this incident, a Pakistani prisoner Sanaullah was attacked by a former Indian trooper in Kotbalwal jail Jammu resulting into his death after few days. On the same day a militant was killed in an encounter in North Kashmir’s Handwara town.
On May 10, militants shot dead an Assistant Sub Inspector in Pulwama while on the same day unidentified gunmen killed a cleric in Lassipora Pulwama. An Indian GCO was killed in Machil Sector during a gunfight with militants on May 18 while on May 21 in a fratricide incident, an SOG man killed his two associates in Kishtwar.
On May 23, a dreaded militant Bilal Molvi was killed in a gun fight with Government Forces in Fathekadal area of old Srinagar city. On May 23 the so called Sufi dervish Gulzar Ahmed Bhat was arrested by Jammu and Kashmir police for raping and sexually abusing several young girls at his religious centre, Khansahib in Budgam district. On May 24, at least 4 Indian soldiers were killed when militants attacked a patrol in South Kashmir’s Tral town. A militant was also killed in the said attack. In a deadly attack in Chattisgarh India on May 26, Moists killed at least 21 persons including three Congress party leaders.
Intense heat wave invited sunstroke deaths in North India on May 27. At least 500 people breathed their last due to intense heat wave in different states of North India. On May 31 two militants were killed in a gunfight with Government Forces in South Kahsmir’s Shopian district.
On June 2, India claimed that it killed at least three Pakistani infiltrators in Nowgam sector while on June 5, two militants were killed in an encounter with Indian troopers in South Kashmir’s Kellar Shopian town. On June 10, militants attacked a police party in Nellora Pulwama injuring two policemen. One militant was also killed in the attack. Militants killed two policemen at Hari Singh High Street on June 22 while In an audacious attack on the Army on the eve of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir, militants killed eight soldiers and left 14 others wounded at Hyderpora. Prime Minister of India inaugurated Banihal-Qazigund Rail Service on June 25. On June 26, militants killed a political worker belonging to National Conference while on the same day Indian troopers killed two militants in Poonch Sector after the militants allegedly tried to infiltrate into this part of Kashmir.
Two militants and a trooper were killed in an encounter in Tral town on July 1. On July 9, at least 8 militants and an Indian soldier were killed in different gunfights that raged in Poonch, Uri and Kupwara sectors while on the same day Chinese troops reportedly infiltrated into Ladakh. On July 10, an Indian soldier was killed in an encounter between militants and troopers in Lolab forests while on July 13 unidentified gunmen beheaded a policeman in Handwara.
On July 14 two Kashmiri students were found dead in mysterious circumstances in Mumbai and Rajasthan. On July 18 the personal security guard of United Jehad Council Chief was killed in a grenade attack at Batamaloo while on the same day, BSF personnel fired upon protestors in Gool Ramban killing at least 4 persons. The protestors had taken to streets against alleged desecration of Holy Quran. On the same day cardiologist Dr Jalaludin was attacked in Pampore in which he was critically injured. Two of his security guards were killed in that deadly attack. Dr Jalal later on succumbed to his injuries at AIIMS Delhi.
On July 19 a militant was killed in Gurez sector while on July 23, a Jaish Commander was gunned down by Indian soldiers in Kupwara. On July 24, Indian soldiers foiled an infiltration bid and killed at least three militants in Uri sector while an SPO was killed in a militant attack on July 28 in Sopore. Four militants were killed in Kupwara sector on July 29. OnJuly 30, a Rajouri youth who was injured in stone-pelting incident near Awantipora breathed his last.
On August 1 at least five militants were killed in a fierce gunfight at Hafrad Handwara. Communal violence broke out in Kishtwar on Eid day on Aug 9 leaving three persons dead. Curfew was imposed in the town after communal violence. On Aug 12, Sajad Kitchloo resigned as Minister of State for Home.
Keran Sector encounter claimed two lives of militants on Aug 14 while 638 persons were killed in violent clashes between the supporters of Mursi and Government Forces in Egypt on Aug16. On the same day, border skirmishes were reported between India and Pakistani soliders after 14 years in Kargil sector. On Aug 26 one policeman was killed in militant attack in Arwani Bijbehara while on the same day militants killed a CRPF personnel in an attack in Shopian town.
International music maestro Zubin Mehta participated in musical concert at Shalimar on Sep 7 while on the same day three youth were killed in Shopian in CRPF firing that triggered wide spread protests all across Kashmir. On the same day, CRPF personnel fired upon an innocent driver in City Centre Lal Chowk leaving him critically injured while in Pulwama town at least 15 policemen were injured in a grenade attack. Ehsaas-i-Kashmir organized a parallel musical concert in Municipal Park Srinagar on Sep 7.
Two militants were killed in Goshbugh Pattan in an encounter on Sep 17 while on Sep 20, Former Army Chief V K Singh’s claim that money was paid to ministers in Jammu and Kashmir from secret funds set off a political storm with ruling National Conference (NC) and ally Congress dared him to name the beneficiaries. The former army chief also allegedly claimed that state minister Ghulam Hasssan Mir was paid Rs.1.19 crore to destabilise the state government. On Sep 23 a CRPF personnel was killed near Iqbal Park Srinagar when militants attacked a patrol party.
On Sep 26, in a two separate fidayeen attacks in Kathua and Samba, three government forces, two militants and two civilians were killed while on Oct 3, Indian army claimed that Pakistani regulars have infiltrated into this part of Kashmir and occupied a village in Shallabhatu area of Keran sector. Army claimed that it killed at least 8 infiltrators during the seven days long gun fight. On Oct 19, In wake of pay off allegations,the Jammu and Kashmir State Assembly asked former chief of army staff, General V.K. Singh, to appear before it. On Oct 11 an Indian soldier was killed in Kupwara while on the same day an infant died after Pakistani Rangers allegedly fired upon Indian posts in Poonch sector.
On Oct 16 on the day of Eid-u-Azah one militant was killed in Devar Lolab during a gunfight between militants and Indian troopers. On the same day, a policeman was killed in Pattan in North Kashmir after stone-pelters allegedly attacked a police bus carrying school children. On Oct 24, a trooper was killed on LoC in Jammu while on Nov 7 two CRPF men were killed in a militant attack in Awantipora.
Militants killed a Station House Officer in Chadoora on Dec 2. In the attack one civilian was also killed.Four militants were killed in Rajwar Handwara on December 3 while on the same day, Congress party was defeated in four Indian states including New Delhi. Aam Admi Party bagged 27 Assembly seats surprising everyone. On Dec 11, a CRPF Sub-Inspector was killed near Pohru Chowk in Nowgam Srinagar in a militant attack while on Dec 19 Lolab encounter came to an end with the killing of a militant.
Sajad Ahmed Kitchloo was re-inducted into the Cabinet after getting clean chit from the Justice Gandhi Commission probing the reasons behind Kishtwar communal violence on December 20. A militant was killed in a gunfight at Hushroo Chadoora in Central Kashmir’s Budgam district on Dec 25 while on Dec 27 Army ordered court martial proceedings against its soldiers for their involvement in Machil fake encounter.
Pertinently, government has reported that in 2013, at least 61 police and security personnel were killed in different militancy related incidents. In 2011-12, this number was 47 while this year according to CNS, 97 militants were neutralized by Government Forces in Jammu and Kashmir while last year this number had touched to 119.