Shameful attack on democracy, says Modi



Items recovered from militants show Pakistani link’

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday termed the terrorist strikes in Kashmir a “shameful attack” on the democratic process in Jammu and Kashmir.

“The terrorist strike in Kashmir was a shameful attack on the democracy of India. It was an attempt to vitiate the atmosphere of hope as a large number of people in Kashmir are turning out to cast their vote,” Mr Modi said while addressing an election rally in Hazaribagh district of poll-bound Jharkhand.

His comments came even as an Army spokesman in Srinagar, Lt. Col. N.N. Joshi, said recoveries from the militants involved in the attack on an Army camp in Uri on Friday clearly showed that they came from Pakistan.

“We found food packets, medicines and sugar-coated toffees on them that were Pakistani and there were other things that prove that they came from Pakistan,” Lt. Col. Joshi told The Hindu.

Paying tributes to the Army men who were killed, Mr. Modi said Jharkhand would never forget the sacrifice of its brave son, Lt. Colonel Sankalp Kumar Shukla, and other soldiers. Though from Bihar, Lt. Col. Shukla’s parents have been living in Ranchi.

“Our brave soldiers sacrificed their lives to protect the country’s security. They died so that the democratic process in the State can continue. I pay my tributes to those brave sons. Jharkhand, too, will not forget the sacrifice of its brave son Sankalp Kumar Shukla,” he said, striking a chord with the voters.

The Chief of the Army Staff, Gen Dalbir Singh, who visited Srinagar, echoed Mr. Modi and said the attacks were meant to disrupt the election.

Gen. Singh laid wreaths on the remains of the soldiers and reviewed the security situation. Lt. Col. Kumar of the Punjab Regiment was among the eight Army men and three policemen killed in Uri.

Among the things recovered from the slain militants were six AK rifles with 55 magazines, two shotguns, two night-vision binoculars, four radio sets, 32 grenades and a medical kit.

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