Jammu: Intruder in Farooq Abdullah’s house shot dead

Jammu : In a security breach, a man forcibly drove into the residence of former chief ministers Farooq Abdullah and his son Omar Abdullah here on Saturday and vandalised the house before being shot dead by CRPF personnel guarding the premises, police said.

Farooq Abdullah, a Lok Sabha member from the Srinagar constituency, was on his way to Srinagar from the national capital, where he has been attending the ongoing Monsoon Session of Parliament, when the security breach was reported.

After news of the incident spread, dozens of relatives of the youth reached the spot and staged protests demanding an inquiry. They even burnt tyres and raised slogans, officials said.

The incident happened on Saturday morning at Bhatindi in the outskirts of the Jammu city when the intruder, identified as Syeed Murfad Shah, who would have turned 26 next month, rammed his XUV car into the front gate of the former chief ministers’ house and continued to drive recklessly and reached the inner garden, according to witnesses.

Both Farooq and Omar Abdullah are Z-plus protectees. Director General of Police SP Vaid said a case was registered and an inquiry was being conducted into the breach of security. “We are looking into the case and trying to ascertain the motive,” he said.

Senior Superintendent of Police (Jammu) said the man had made a forcible entry and refused to stop despite repeated warnings. One policeman was also injured in the scuffle, he said.

Reacting to the incident, Abdullah told PTI, “It is very unfortunate that such an incident has happened and speaks volumes about the security situation in the state. Police must investigate the motive of the youth.”

Police said Shah hails from Gulthata village of Mendhar tehsil in Poonch district of Jammu region. The family is at present settled at Chinnor in Jammu and his father runs a gun shop at Bantalab in Jammu. His relatives told reporters that he had gone to attend his gym in the morning and they were not quite 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.

Asked whether he was taking any drugs, a relative shot back, “He used to go the gym in morning and evening. Ask them?”

After the body was taken to the Government Medical College hospital for postmortem, about 200 acquaintances of the deceased assembled there and prevented doctors from performing the autopsy for several hours, asking why an “innocent unarmed person” was killed, officials said. Another large group of protesters blocked the main road at Chinore, they said.

Eyewitnesses said after ramming his car into the iron gate, the intruder continued to drive within the compound till he reached the house where Abdullah and his son Omar stay. He stopped at the inner lawns, supposed to be highly secured, got down from the vehicle and entered into the main lobby where he broke a glass table and pictures hanging from the walls, and started climbing the stairs leading to the bedroom, police said. By this time, CRPF personnel guarding the residence of the National Conference leaders got into action and challenged the intruder who continued vandalising everything that came his way. He was finally shot dead, police said, adding that a case was registered in this connection.

“An intruder gate-crashed into the house of Abdullah, had a scuffle with security personnel and attempted to snatch a rifle from an officer,” Inspector General of Police (Jammu) S D Singh Jamwal told reporters. He said the youth was alone in the vehicle and an investigation was on to ascertain how he managed to reach the house without being challenged.

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