Police officer lynched outside mosque in Srinagar

Srinagar, Jun 23 (PTI) A deputy superintendent of police was stripped naked and stoned to death by an irate mob after he allegedly opened fire at a group of people, who caught him clicking pictures near a mosque in downtown area in the early hours today.

The police officer identified as Mohammed Ayoub Pandit was on duty when the mob attacked him, a police spokesman said.

DGP S P Vaid termed the killing as sad and unfortunate.

“The official was killed by the mob while he was performing his duties. It’s a very sad and unfortunate incident,” the DGP said.

Earlier police sources had said that Pandit was seen moving around by people near Jamia Masjid in Nowhatta area at 0030 hours.

He was allegedly clicking pictures of people while they were coming out of the mosque.

They said people tried to catch Pandit who allegedly fired several shots from his pistol, injuring three persons.

The irate mob then caught hold of him and stripped him naked before stoning him to death, the sources said.

His body was taken to police control room for identification and other legal procedures, they said adding the situation in old city has turned tense following the incident.

The mob went on a rampage targeting empty security pickets erected in the area.

Police reinforcement were rushed in to restore normalcy in the area.

Muslims across Kashmir are observing Shab-e-Qadr (the night of power) with night-long prayers and supplications being made inside the mosques and shrines of the valley.

Authorities have already announced restrictions on movement of people in seven police station areas of the city as a precautionary measure.

The restrictions were announced to maintain law and order as separatists had called for protests after Friday prayers against killing of a civilian during protests in Kakapora area of Pulwama District yesterday.

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