Intruder shot dead after forcibly entering Farooq Abdullah's Jammu home; inquiry ordered into security breach

Security personnel on Saturday shot dead a man after he forcibly tried to enter former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah's home in Jammu in a car. The intruder was shot dead by security guards when he tried to forcibly enter the house in a car.

The Jammu and Kashmir Police said the intruder — identified as 25-year-old Syeed Murfad Shah — was from Mendar and had entered the lobby of Abdullahs' home before being shot dead.

The incident took place in Bhatindi on the outskirts of Jammu city. The intruder had rammed his car into the front gate of the former chief minister's house and driven recklessly through the compound till he reached the house where the Abdullahs live, the police said.

Vivek Gupta, senior superintendent of police, was quoted as saying by ANI that the intruder had breached the main gate and gone inside. "He had a scuffle with the duty officer there, who was also injured. After that he entered the residence and there has also been some sort of damage to the articles over there. Subsequently, he was shot dead," he added.

Director General of the Jammu and Kashmir Police SP Vaid said a case has been registered and an inquiry is being conducted into the breach of security. "We are looking into the case and trying to ascertain the motive," he said.

Abdullah was on his way to Srinagar from Delhi, where he has been attending the ongoing Monsoon Session of Parliament, when the security breach was reported. Reacting to the incident, the National Conference chief told PTI: "It is very unfortunate that such an incident has happened and speaks volumes about the security situation in the state. The police must investigate the motive of the youth."

His son and former chief minister Omar Abdullah tweeted that according to the initial reports, the intruder was able to gain entry to the upper lobby of the house.

Soon after the incident, relatives of the youth staged protests and demanded an inquiry into the incident, officials said. Shah's father and around 200 acquaintances initially stopped authorities from conducting an autopsy at the Government Medical College for several hours. As the postmortem examination finally got underway, another large group of protesters blocked the main road at Chinore along the Jammu-Bantalab road. The protestors also burnt tyres and shouted slogans against security forces.

Shah's relatives told reporters that he had left home for the gym in the morning, and that they were not sure how he had reached the Abdullahs' residence. "Why was he not arrested? He was not carrying any weapon or explosives on him," one of them said.

According to Inspector General of Police (Jammu) SD Singh Jamwal, Shah had also tried to snatch a rifle from an officer at Abdullah's house before he was killed. He said an investigation was on to ascertain how he had managed to reach the house without detection.

After the protests, District Development Commissioner (Jammu) Ramesh Kumar ordered a magisterial inquiry into the incident. " The Sub-Divisional Magistrate of Jammu North will conduct the investigation and submit his report within four weeks," he said.

Meanwhile, the National Conference has sought a high-level inquiry by the National Investigating Agency into the security breach. NC provincial spokesperson Madan Mantoo said: "As Abdullah is a central government-categorised protectee, the government of India should carry out an independent and impartial inquiry by a team deputed by the Ministry of Home Affairs."

The spokesperson asserted that the investigation must cover all aspects, including how a car was able to gain entry into the supposedly highly-secured house with minimum cosmetic damage, considering the strength of the main gate. "The security lapse is needed to be probed expeditiously so that the truth comes to the fore," he added.

The Jammu and Kashmir unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party has also demanded that an impartial and prompt investigation be conducted into the incident, and that the CCTV camera footage be released. "The BJP demands an impartial and prompt inquiry into the matter of the fake encounter. To set at rest the apprehensions of the members of the family of the deceased, the CCTV footage should be released to the media by the police immediately," BJP state spokesperson Anil Gupta said, adding that the "cold-blooded" murder in a VIP residence raises many questions. "The family of the deceased is calling the incident a fake encounter and insists that their son was called by somebody to the residence of the former chief minister," he said.

With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: Aug 04, 2018 23:10:04 IST