In yet another case of the militants stealing weapons from a J&K legislator, gunmen on Sunday decamped with four service rifles of policemen guarding the official residence of Congress MLC Muhammad Muzaffar Parray here.
Earlier in September, Adil Bashir Sheikh, a special police officer deployed with former Peoples Democratic Party legislator Aijaz Mir had looted seven rifles and Mir’s licensed pistol from his official residence. Seven PSOs of Mir were placed under suspension and are serving detention since then.
Yet another incident has alarmed security agencies. A manhunt was launched at various places across Srinagar including at Ram Bagh, Rajbagh, Dalgate, Pantha Chowk and Batamaloo.
Also, soon after the incident, senior police officers rushed to the residence of the legislator and detained the four policemen for questioning. They have also been placed under suspension.
Official figures put the number of weapons looted in 2018 at 74. These include 17 AK-47 rifles, 23 SLRs and 14 INSAS guns.
Most of these weapons have been forcibly snatched by the militants from the security personnel standing guard on the streets, or post a shoot-out in which security personnel are killed.
But it is the looting of weapons from the residences of the legislators that has become a source of deeper worry for the security agencies, as it is mostly the insiders that are seen to facilitate it.
“We have started the investigation into the incident,” said a senior police officer.