Seven Hindu pilgrims have died in a firefight between militants and police in Kashmir during a highly sensitive religious procession.
Six women and one man were killed in Monday evening’s attack in the southern district of Anantnag. It was the deadliest assault on Hindu pilgrims in the majority-Muslim region since 2000, and comes amid heightened religious tensions across northern India and another summer of violence in Kashmir.
Minister - Narendra - Modi - Words - Attack
The Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi, tweeted he was “pained beyond words at the dastardly attack” on Hindus participating in the Amarnath Yatra, an annual pilgrimage to a cave shrine near the hill station of Pahalgam. Modi added:
India will never get bogged down by such cowardly attacks & the evil designs of hate.
Pilgrimage - Popularity - Source - Tension - Past
The pilgrimage, which has grown enormously in popularity since the early 1990s and been a source of tension in the past, went ahead this year despite police intelligence of a planned militant attack.
Unprecedented security measures, including surveillance cameras, bulletproof bunkers and phone jammers, had been implemented to protect the estimated 115,000 pilgrims.
Saturday - Security - Fears - Anniversary - Killing
It was suspended on Saturday because of security fears on the one-year anniversary of the killing of Burhan Wani, an anti-India militant whose death triggered weeks of protests and the longest curfew in the history of Indian-controlled Kashmir.
Police in Kashmir said the attack began with militants firing on a security bunker and a police checkpoint...
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