“My daughter-in-law brought water for these dreadful-looking men who entered our home at around 12.15 Pm but they refused it. I secretly rolled my eyes and signalled my family members to leave the house. One-by- one my wife, daughter-in-law, son and neighbour left the house but when I started to leave, one of the terrorists with a gun signalled me to sit down quietly,” he said.
In an event which comes from Batote Town of Ramban District from Jammu & Kashmir, 3 terrorist attacks took place in the state, in a single day on Saturday, 29th September. This happened after the Day-time restrictions were lifted from 22 districts of the state for the first time.
In one of the 3 incidents, 3 terrorists entered a BJP leader’s house in the forest area of Batote, after they were recognized by soldiers. These terrorists were trying to hijack a bus in the morning. However, the smart gesture by the bus driver saved the lives of the passenger.
You can read about the whole incident here:
These 3 terrorists belonged to Hizbul Mujahideen and were killed by the brave security personnel in Batote. As per the reports there were searching for a vehicle to get to Srinagar and that is why they infiltrated 65-year old Vijay Kumar Verm’s House. He is BJP’s booth president and was held hostage in his own house for 5 hours.
While explaining the terror, Verma said, “Three terrorists entered my house at around 11.30 am on Saturday. I was in the house with my wife, daughter-in-law and a neighbour. My two sons had gone to the market. Of these three armed men, two had kept unkempt beard and one was clean-shaven, came inside and sat quietly in a room. They looked somewhere between 20 to 30 years in age. They didn’t talk to us then but of course, a chill ran down our spine.”
After a while, his son returned from the market. He further told that her daughter-in-law brought water for the men but they refused it. He then signalled his wife, neighbour, son & daughter in law to move out of the house. As soon as he was trying to sneak out, he was stopped at gunpoint but one of them and was signalled to sit quietly.
The BJP personnel also said that when the two entered the house, they seemed out of their nerves and fatigued. He later understood that they are terrorists and would have gone here running from the security forces chasing them.
“In a while, I started getting panic calls from my family on my phone. One of the terrorists asked me about it. One of them talked to me using the Urdu language. However, they conversed with each other in Kashmiri language only,” he said.
“Since my family had left, I relieved man even knowing they are out of any danger, although I knew that I was held, hostage. None of them abused me or beat me up. They, however, took my cell phone. They used my phone to talk to someone. But I could not comprehend as the conversation was in the Kashmiri language,” he added.
As per Verma, the encounter started at around 12.15 Pm.
He recalled that when security forces yelled his name to enquire about his well-being, the terrorists asked him to respond to the calls telling the forces that he was fine.
“Security forces asked the militants them about their count & also asked them to surrender. They lied and said that they were five in number,” said Verma.
Verma further went on to tell the who story:
“During captivity, the terrorists enquired me if I had any vehicle but I lied to them. I think they wanted to go to Srinagar. They even asked me if I could lead them to the road. They had hand-grenades, AK-47 rifles, pistols and probably an INSAS rifle. Looking at the good number of ammunition with them, it seemed they were prepared for the incident,” he added.
“They carried a backpack and some almonds too. One of them offered me almonds but I told them that I had no teeth to chew the dry fruit”, he added.
While telling about the final phase he said, “In the final phase of the operation, there was an intense exchange of fire between the soldiers and the terrorists. I had already cornered myself in a room where one terrorist was with me. Two others were in an adjoining storeroom.”
After the smoke canisters were fired, there was smoke all around in the house. The old man had to use a pillow to save himself and so did the terrorist who was with him in the room.
While concluding his conversation about the event, Verma said, “Soon the terrorist rushed outside the room, towards the lobby. I could hear loud voices from outside, Maro- Maro (Kill, Kill). There was indiscriminate firing between the troops. After around 20 minutes, when the firing stopped, I came out and saw there were no terrorists, including the two others from the storeroom. One of the doors of my house was on fire. I was unaware of the situation so I raised my hands and ran outside. An army officer asked me if I was Vijay Kumar Verma and that’s how I was rescued. It was very bad to learn that a young soldier lost his life in combat.”
Out of total 5 terrorists, 3 who entered Verma’s house were taken out by security forces which included Jammu & Kashmir police officials and CRPF soldiers. However, there has been no update up till now about the other two who ran in the forests.
Author: Keshav Kothari
A young CA Aspirant who is a writer and a photographer with the zeal to convey a positive perception through his work.