SRINAGAR: A Special Police Officer (SPO) guarding the Srinagar residence of Aijaz Ahmad Mir, PDP MLA from Wachi, Shopian, ran away with seven AK assault rifles and a pistol of policemen on Friday evening, prompting security forces to sound an alert.
A police official said SPO Adil Bashir Sheikh decamped with nine service weapons from the MLA’s residence at Government Quarters in Jawahar Nagar in uptown Srinagar this evening.
He said the SPO looted seven AK assault rifles and one pistol from the guard room at MLA’s residence before fleeing from the place.
The SPO hailed from Zainapora area of south Kashmir’s Shopian district, which is a militancy-infested region.
In Shopian, militants had last week abducted and killed three policemen, including two SPOs.
Sources said SPO Adil Bashir (bearing No. 488) had been engaged as SPO on March 11, 2017.
A police official said a manhunt had been launched to track down the deserter SPO.
The police has also released a picture of the deserter SPO.
“We have sounded high alert across the Valley and check points have been set up on all roads connecting Srinagar with other district headquarters, especially towards south Kashmir,” the police official said.
He said they had launched an investigation and the policemen posted at the MLA’s residence for guard duty were being questioned as to why they did not resist and how they allowed the SPO to take away nine rifles with him.
It is the biggest weapons snatching incident in the Valley.
The incident comes a few days after the Union Ministry of Home Affairs increased the remuneration of SPOs from Rs 6,000 to Rs 12,000.