‘Isaac Newton’ picked up gun 12 days after PDP became BJP’s partner
Hizb suffers setback as 3 Burhan associates killed in Tral encounter; thousands attend funeral processions
Ahmed Ali Fayyaz________
JAMMU, March 3: Mufti Mohammad Sayeed’s trademark criticism of National Conference and Congress, on the day of launching his own Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in July 1999 and thereafter, was that the two parties’ coalition in 1987 created an opposition vacuum in Jammu and Kashmir. He used to argue that the Muslim United Front (MUF)---and subsequently the infinite secessionist insurgency---was the creation of Rajiv-Farooq accord.
After months of virulent campaigning against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his ‘Mission-44 plus” when Mufti went for the anti-climax, and formed PDP’s coalition with Modi’s BJP on March 1, 2015, he ironically seems to have created a bigger vacuum. Unknown number of the Valley’s youths, who had been mobilised in PDP’s favour for the ‘counter mission of subverting Modi’s Mission 44 Plus”, abandoned their studies and joined the militant ranks. 19-year-old brilliant student, Mohammad Ishaq Parray of Laribal Tral, was one of the youngsters who picked up the gun in 12 days of Mufti’s taking over as Chief Minister.
Paradoxically, Ishaq Parray, who lived close to the famous Shikargah sanctuary and had an ambition to become a scientist or a doctor, had secured an incredible 98.4% marks in his Matriculation exam. Even in Class 12th, he obtained over 85%. On account of his sharp comprehension of science and mathematics, coupled with his ambition, Ishaq came to be known as ‘Isaac Newton’.
On March 13, 2015, ‘Newton’ started his maiden action in militancy. Newton’s Third Law of Motion---‘To every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction’---culled out three young lives, including Ishaq’s, when troops swooped down on their hideout and killed all the three holed up militants in a single-storey house at Mir Mohalla, on the southern outskirts of Dadsar. This is the village which, for over a decade, won the sobriquet of the Kashmir militancy’s capital as it produced the highest number of militants---around 50, more than any other village in the Valley.
Interestingly, Dadsar lives in a contrast. It also created the first---and till date the last---Divisional Commander of the Indian Army, Major General Amin Nayak. Even the Hizbul Mujahideen’s youth icon Burhan Wani, in whose praise slogans were shouted last month even at Jawahar Lal Nehru University, in New Delhi, lived here at Amlar hamlet before his father Muzaffar Wani shifted residence to Shariefabad, situated on the outskirts of Tral.
Dadsar, the graveyard of over 50 militants and civilians, reverberated with deafening gunfire all through last night as the threesome---‘Isaac Newton’, Asif Ahmad Mir alias Muaviya of the same neighbourhood and Ashiq Ahmad Bhat alias Obaida of Chursoo---made sustained efforts to escape. Labouring under the apprehension that massive crowds could gather next morning and disrupt the operation, as happened in several other encounters in Pulwama district, troops destroyed the house but only after the inmates were evacuated safely. All the three militants, in the age group of 19 to 24 years, were killed and their partially charred bodies were recovered and handed over to the residents for the last rites.
Luck had favoured Asif on July 3 last year when he got hit in an encounter at Saimoh but managed to escape. His secret visit to his aunt’s house proved to be fatal on Wednesday night.
“Much more than the encounter, we were apprehensive of a possible law and order situation. However, thank God, the residents did not create much of trouble and the funeral of the three militants passed off smoothly”, SSP Awantipore Mohammad Irshad told STATE TIMES. He said that three to four thousand people participated in the three militants’ funeral procession, though independent reports, corroborated by a Police agency, insisted that over 6,000 attended Asif’s funeral and 3,000 each Ishaq’s and Ashiq’s, amid the routine anti-India, pro-azadi and pro-Pakistan slogans. Police chose to stay away.
“It was a neat and clean operation that ended without any collateral damage. Protests and paying homage to the militants doesn’t bother us much. That essentially is the job of the local Police and politicians. They know how to deal with it”, said a senior Army officer associated with the operation.
“The sacrifices of Muhammad Ishaq, Aasif Ahmad Mir and Ashiq Hussain Bhat revealed that every Kashmiri is yearning for freedom,” Hizbul Mujahideen supremo Syed Salauddin said in praise of the three militants in a statement from Pakistan. He regretted that “some elements” were assisting Indian armed forces to eliminate militants “for their vested interests.”
“There are some elements that indulge in anti-freedom activities and work for Indian agencies as informers. The involved persons will also get exposed,” the Hizb chief said while extending sympathies and condolences to the bereaved families.