Lawyapora shootout: Family appeals for youth’s release; ‘Umar has no militant links’
Srinagar, Feb 8: Family of Umar Fayaz, who was injured in a brief shootout at Lawaypora, last week asserted that he has no militant links. On February 5, two militants were killed after they killed a paramilitary trooper in a brief gunfight on the Srinagar-Baramulla highway in city outskirts. Police claimed to have caught alive another “militant” Umar Fayaz, who was injured in the shootout. On Saturday, family of Umar staged a protest in Press Enclave claiming that Umar is innocent and has no affiliation with militants. Umar has been admitted to Sri Maharaja Hari Singh Hospital after suffering bullets in the abdomen and is under the surveillance of police. Family said they are not being allowed to meet him. Lone breadwinner of his family, Umar is the only support for his mentally ill mother, ailing father and unmarried sister. “We have a general store just outside our house in Lawaypora. Umar was at the shop when the shootout took place. A force vehicle fired indiscriminately. A bullet hit my son in his abdomen,” said Fayaz Ahmad, Umar’s father. Fayaz said his son is a shopkeeper and has no links with any militant organization. “He is our only support. His mother is battling mental illness for the past many years. We demand justice,” he said. Majid, an eyewitness said, he was in Umar’s shop when bullet him on the fateful day. “Blood was oozing from his belly and I cried out louder. His aunt came and hired a cab to take him to the hospital,” he said. Senior Superintendent of Police, Srinagar, Haseeb Mughal said: “We assure everyone that we will probe the matter thoroughly. Mughal said if he is not guilty, police will ensure that he is released. “He is under observation and was not in a position to speak to anybody. Once he will be mentally fit to talk, agencies will question him first and later his family will be allowed to meet him,” he said.