Seven people including five policemen were killed Monday when suspected militants attacked a bank van carrying cash in Kulgam area of Kashmir, police said.
"All the seven in the van, five policemen and two bank employees, were killed," director general of police SP Vaid said. The Hizbul Mujahideen claimed responsibility for the attack. A Hizbul spokesman, calling himself as Burhan-ud-Din, made the claim over telephone to a local news agency.
Senior police and paramilitary officers rushed to the spot after the killings.
The cash van had deposited cash in the Neehama village branch of the bank and was returning to Kulgam town when it came under attack.
The van was returning to a bank in the village of Pumbai in Kulgam district, around 70 kilometres (43 miles) south of the main city of Srinagar, when it came under fire, Vaid said.
Another police officer said on condition of anonymity that the attackers made off with cash and weapons.
Suspected militants in recent months have targeted banks across the restive Kashmir valley, where several armed groups have been fighting against Indian rule for decades.
Last week police said they foiled a bank raid in the southern district of Anantnag by two men who opened fire on paramilitary guards.
One of the attackers was arrested while another managed to escape.
Anti-India sentiment runs deep in Kashmir, where most people favour independence or a merger with mainly Muslim Pakistan.
Kashmir has been divided between India and Pakistan since the end of British rule in 1947 but both claim the territory in its entirety.
Published Date: May 01, 2017 18:25 PM | Updated Date: May 01, 2017 20:58 PM