SPO From Pulwama Police Station Deserts, Joins Hizb

SRINAGAR — A special police officer (SPO), who had gone missing along with his service rifle from the Police Station, Pampore in South Kashmir on Tuesday evening, has joined militant ranks, reports said today.

The SPO (Special Police Officer), identified as Irfan Ahmad Dar hailing from Nihama, Pulwama was the Personal Security Officer (PSO) of the Pampore Station House Officer.

“SPO Irfan Ahmad Dar who fled with his service rifle has joined Hizbul Mujahideen,” Hizb spokesman Burhan-ud-din said in a statement to a local news agency in Srinagar. “We appeal to all the Jammu and Kashmir police cadres to give up their job and join Hizbul Mujahideen to give a push to the resistance struggle.”

“Irfan is believed to have fled away with an AK-47 rifle along with the ammunition as he was not found inside the station since yesterday evening,” police sources said.

SSP Awantipora, Zahid Malik, when contacted said that the SPO is missing from the police station.

“We are ascertaining his whereabouts and investigation has been launched,” SSP said.

A joint team of army and SOG visited the spot and launched a manhunt to trace out the missing cop.

Several police personnel have deserted their units and joined militant ranks over the last two years, particularly after the uprising triggered by the killing of militant commander Burhan Wani in 2016.

Naseer Ahmad Pandit was the first policeman to join Hizbul Mujahideen. He was the PSO of a senior Minister in PDP-BJP coalition government. He had escaped with two rifles from the ministers Srinagar residence.

Syed Naveed from Shopian escaped from Budgam last year and has risen to the top ranks of the Hizbul Mujahideen. Ishfaq Ahmad Dar from Shopian joined the Lashkar-e-Taiba last year.

Two Army men have also joined militant ranks during this period.


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