JAMMU: A Kashmiri soldier, who was posted in Bihar and had come home to Shopian on leave, is reported to have joined the Hizbul Mujahideen. He is the second soldier from the Army to sign up with a militant group in the last nine months.A picture of Mir Idrees Sultan, son of Mohammad Sultan Mir of Safanagri in south Kashmir’s Shopian district, holding an AK-47 rifle has gone viral on social media. The soldier, according to the picture, joined the Hizbul Mujahideen on Sunday.According to the picture, Idrees has studied till BSc second year and was serving in the Army’s 12 Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry (JAKLI) in Bihar.
Shopian SSP Ambarkar Shriram Dinkar told Express it was confirmed that the army man had joined the militant group.Dinkar said that according to his family, Idrees had left home on Sunday evening and not returned. “We have lodged a missing complaint and we are in touch with his family,” the SSP said, adding the soldier was supposed to return to Bihar on Tuesday. The defense said Idrees had joined the army two-three years back. An official said they were ascertaining how and when he got in touch with militants and whether he had provided them any sensitive information.
Sources said three youths from Shopian, including the army man, had joined militancy after the April 1 twin gunfights in the district in which 12 militants and four civilians were killed. The Shopian SSP confirmed the figures.
A police officer said militants would use Idrees’s joining their ranks as a propaganda tool to lure more educated youths. Already, many highly educated youngsters, including a PhD scholar and an MBA graduate, have joined militancy.On July 6 last year, Territorial Army soldier Zahoor Ahmad Thokar of Sirnoo, Pulwama, had deserted his unit in Gantamulla area of north Kashmir’s Baramulla district and fled with an AK 47 rifle and ammunition to join the Hizbul Mujahideen.Many policemen have also joined the militant ranks in Jammu and Kashmir in the past.