Rising Kashmir editor Shujaat Bukhari shot dead in Srinagar

SRINAGAR, Jun 14: Veteran journalist and Rising Kashmir editor Shujaat Bukhari and his PSO were shot dead by unidentified gunmen outside the newspaper’s office in the heart of this Jammu and Kashmir summer capital, police officials said on Thursday.
Bukhari, who was in his 50s, was leaving his office in Press Enclave in the city centre Lal Chowk for an iftar party when he was shot, officials said. He was reportedly shot several times by unidentified gunmen as he was about to get into his car.
While one of the personal security officers (PSO) guarding him was killed, another policeman and a civilian were injured, they added.
The condition of the two injured in the shooting, which comes a day ahead of Eid, is critical, they said.
Bukhari had been receiving police protection since 2000, when he was the target of an earlier attack.
It was not immediately clear how many gunmen attacked Bukhari, who earlier worked with The Hindu newspaper as its Kashmir correspondent.
Bukhari was instrumental in organizing several conferences for peace in the Kashmir Valley. He was also part of the Track II process with Pakistan.
Expressing shock over the murder, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urged the authorities to do everything possible to find his killers.
The editor of the well-known daily Rising Kashmir and one the region’s most renowned journalists, the RSF said late Thursday.
“Shujaat Bukhari’s brutal murder is a major blow for the Kashmiri media community and comes just as the United Nations is calling for an investigation into human rights abuses in Kashmir,” RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk said.
“We urge the local and national authorities to shed all possible light on this horrific crime, which has silenced one of Kashmir’s leading independent and moderate voices,” it said.