The nephew of PDP legislator Zafar Iqbal Manhas has joined the Hizbul Mujahideen in Kashmir. A resident of Shadab Karewa village in south Kashmir s Shopian district, Kamran Zahoor Manhas is an engineering student.
On Wednesday, a picture showing Kamran Zahoor Manhas holding an AK-47 rifle went viral on social media.
When contacted, Zafar Iqbal Manhas, who is a member of the Legislative Council and the vice-president of the J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages, said he was in absolute disbelief over the news. The PDP leader told The Indian Express said the family could never imagine such a thing even in his dreams.
Manhas said that Kamran had gone to neighbouring Mulga town 20 days ago. He told the publication that Kamran was studying in Kulgam and it is only now that the family has come to know that he has joined militancy.
Kamran is the first youth from the village in more than twenty years to join militantancy. Reports of Kamran has joined militancy have been confirmed by a senior police officer from south Kashmir.
The restive state has been battling militancy since the 90s. There have been numerous policies including the one by Omar Abdullah government in 2010 which introduced a rehabilitation policy for militants in Kashmir who had gone to Pakistan between the duration of 1989-2009 for arms training, and who after a change of heart wished to drop the gun and return to lead a peaceful life in their homes.
The development comes two months after Baramulla in North Kashmir was declared militant-free by the Jammu and Kashmir Police in January 2019 post the killing of three militants in the district.
However, the February Pulwama terror attacks on the CRPF convoy carrying security personnel worsened the situation.