Srinagar: A day after the killing of three Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers including a party functionary, J&K Police blamed Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) militant group for the attack.
"The names of LeT militants are cropping up... The involvement of a FT (foreign terrorist) is also coming up," Inspector General of Police Vijay Kumar told reporters in south Kashmir's Kulgam.
Three BJP workers, Fida Hussain, Umer Hajam and Umer Rashid Beigh were shot dead by militants in Kulgam district on late Thursday. Soon after the killing, the Resistance Front (TRF), believed by police as a shadow organisation of Lashkar, had claimed the responsibility.
Kumar said they have also seized the car that was used to carry out the attack.
"The militants came in a local car belonging to a local militant identified as Altaf. Fida ( BJP leader) was with his two colleagues in a car and the militants fired indiscriminately on them from close range. They succumbed on the way to the hospital. The militants fled in the same car towards Achbal area, from where the car was seized this morning," IGP said, adding that the militants involved in the attack would be neutralized soon.
The Police officer said the attack on the BJP leaders could be a pre- planned one.
"We are investigating what were they doing in Kulgam area last evening. There is a chance that it was a pre-planned attack and we are investigating it," Kumar said.
The IGP said police had provided protection to slain BJP youth leader Fida Hussain and he was lodged at a hotel in Pahalgam.
"Recently, he (Fida) gave undertaking that he can roam around without security. At least 1690 BJP workers, leaders, activists were lodged in various hotels while 157 were provided with security cover on the basis of threat perception. We urge BJP leaders, workers, activists not to venture out without their security guards and don't go to areas that are quite far," he said adding that these killings take place on the orders from Pakistan.
Meanwhile, BJP's J&K president Ravinder Raina Friday said the world powers should "join hands and conduct NATO airstrikes on militant camps in Pakistan."
"..Time has come for the world to jointly impose economic sanctions against Pakistan and with NATO forces, the big powers should conduct airstrikes on terror camps in Pakistan. Pakistan is a threat to world peace and humanity," Raina told reporters after visiting Kulgam to condole the death of party workers.
Raina said the slain BJP workers were "brave and nationalist".