Activist from BJP Killed in Kashmir by Suspected Rebels

Aijaz Ahmad, a local leader of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), was shot dead by suspected rebels in Kashmir’s Shopian district, local authorities reported on Sunday. This incident marks the latest in a series of violent attacks in the disputed region as India conducts its six-week national elections.

The attack occurred on Saturday evening, with Ahmad succumbing to his injuries later that night. The BJP’s local office in Kashmir confirmed his death and announced plans to protest against the violence.

In a separate incident on the same day, two Indian tourists were injured in an attack by suspected rebels in nearby Anantnag district. Police stated that both tourists were hospitalized following the assault. Security forces have since cordoned off the areas surrounding both incidents in an effort to apprehend those responsible.

Kashmir, a territory divided between India and Pakistan since their independence in 1947, remains a flashpoint of conflict. Rebel groups in Indian-administered Kashmir have long fought for independence or a merger with Pakistan, a stance India claims is backed by Islamabad—a charge Pakistan denies. The conflict has claimed tens of thousands of lives, including civilians, soldiers, and militants.

Violence in the region has significantly decreased since 2019, when Modi’s government revoked the Muslim-majority region’s limited autonomy, bringing it under direct rule from New Delhi. However, clashes have spiked since the onset of the current general elections. Earlier this month, an attack by suspected rebels on a military convoy resulted in the death of an Indian air force member and injuries to four others.

The recent surge in violence underscores the persistent instability in Kashmir, despite ongoing efforts to curb insurgency and maintain peace in the region.


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