Posters with photographs of three Hizbul Mujahideen militants wanted for the killing of young Kashmiri army officer Ummer Fayaz were put up on Friday by police at various places in Shopian township of south Kashmir offering reward to anyone providing information about them.

The police identified the three militants suspected to be involved in the abduction and subsequent killing of Lieutenant Fayaz as Ishfaq Ahmad Thoker and Gayas-ul-Islam, both residents of Padderpora village, and Abass Ahmad Bhat of Mantribugh. Lt Fayaz, 22, was abducted on Tuesday and was found shot dead the next morning in Shopian district where he had gone to attend a marriage ceremony of a relative.

The incident sparked outrage in the country with the army vowing to punish his killers while Defence Minister Arun Jaitley called the attack a “dastardly act of cowardice” by militants. Hailing from Kulgam district, Lt Fayaz from the Infantry was posted in Akhnoor area in Jammu and was commissioned in the army in December last year.

The posters put up by district police Shopian with pictures of gun-weilding militants, read: “The above criminals who are involved in many terrorist acts including the murder of Umar Fayaz Parray s/o Fayaz Ahmad Parray R/o Sarsona Kulgam…. “Any person providing information regarding the above criminals will be suitably rewarded and his identity will be kept secret.” 

Defence sources had on Thursday said six militants involved in the killing of Fayaz had been identfied. They were from Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Hizbul Mujahideen, they said, adding security forces were carrying out searches in various areas to nab the militants. Quoting preliminary investigations, a senior police officer had said that a Hizbul Mujahideen module was behind the killing and an INSAS rifle which was snatched from police personnel could have been used in the crime.

b’xc2xa0Lt Ummer Fayaz being laid to rest | Source: PTI’

“We have conducted preliminary investigation… it does point out to (involvement of) a module of Hizbul Mujahideen active in Shopian,” Inspector General of Police Kashmir S J M Gillani had said. Police has found two empty cartridges of an INSAS rifle at the place where Lt Fayaz was shot dead. “We had two incidents of weapons snatching in south Kashmir recently.

We have leads that the Kulgam weapon snatching was carried out by Lashkar militants while Hizb militants were involved in weapon snatching at Shopian court complex (on May 2). “So it could be one of those weapons. We are looking at it,” he had said.