The Jammu and Kashmir Police on Wednesday said that the Hizbul Mujahideen militant Sajid Ahmad Gilkar, who was killed in an encounter on Wednesday, had played a key role in the lynching of DSP Mohammad Ayub Pandith last month.

DSP Pandith was stripped and stoned to death by a mob outside the historic Jamia Masjid in Nowhatta area of downtown Srinagar on June 22.

“Gilkar played a key role in the lynching of DSP Mohammad Ayub Pandith of the security wing. He went underground and joined the Hizbul Mujahideen after the lynching incident,” a police spokesman said.

b’Jammu and Kashmir CM Mehbooba Mufti laying a wreath at the coffin of slain DSP Mohammed Ayub Pandit in Srinagar | Source: PTI’

Gilkar and his associates Aaqib Gul and Javaid Ahmad Shiekh were killed in an overnight gunbattle with security forces in Redbugh area of Budgam district on Wednesday.

According to a report by  NDTV, Gilkar was one of the those who led a 150-strong mob outside the mosque. On Tuesday, a joint team of the police and the Rashtriya Rifles launched a search operation at a house in Budgam where the three militants were staying. The security forces first approached the families of Hizbul militants and asked them to surrender. But the militants didn’t surrender and opened fire. An encounter ensued in which all the three were later killed. Two security officials were also injured.

b’Ayub Pandith | Source: PTI’

Police said Gilkar has been involved in other such cases.

“He was involved in grenade attacks on the CRPF at Nowhatta on April 22, Khanyar police party on April 30 and Safa Kadal CRPF camp on June 21. He was also involved in attacks on PDP worker Abdul Qayoom in Barzulla on May 24 and an army convoy near SKIMS Bemina April 1 ,” the spokesman said.

The spokesman also added that the slain militants had a role in the recent weapon snatching incidents in the south and central Kashmir as well as several anti-national activities, unlawful activities, damaging of government property and stone pelting incidents.