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Suspected militants damage 400 KV electricity transmission tower in Shopian of Kashmir

If the tower was damaged and sabotage was successful, most of the areas in Kashmir Valley could have been pushed suddenly into darkness for many hours and amplified load shedding for many days to come.

Oct 25, 2019, 05.56 PM IST
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J&K police officials claim that militants are desperate to show their presence and instigate a reaction among the masses.
In what appears to be a major attempt of sabotage, unidentified persons suspected to be militants, cut out a portion of two limbs of 400 KV electricity transmission tower in Chitragam village of Shopian in southern Kashmir.

If the tower was damaged and sabotage was successful, most of the areas in Kashmir Valley could have been pushed suddenly into darkness for many hours and amplified load shedding for many days to come.

The armed forces noticed the damage in tower number of 348 of Kishenpur-Wagoora transmission line when they were on a search operation in Chittragam villagein wake of the killing of two non-local truck drivers-Ilyas Khan and Zahid Khan from Rajasthan - who were shot dead around 7:30pm on Thursday. The two spots are just few hundred meters away in Chitragam village.

J&K police has registered a case for destruction of public property and are investigating whether the same militant group is involved in the killings of non-locals and damaging the electricity tower. "They have used gas cutters to damage the two limbs of the electricity tower," said an army official at the spot.

This transmission line, which comes under Power Grid Corporation of India Limited, is one of the major electricity transmission lines that connects Kashmir Valley to northern power grid. "This is a major incident of its kind and most probably militants could be behind this. But we are investigating the details," a senior CRPF official told ET.

Soon after the damage was discovered a group of armed forces was deployed immediately at the spot to safeguard the electricity tower for the whole night. The power department engineers arrived around 12:30pm on Friday to repair the damages."This line has the potential to transmit 700MW to 800MW electricity which is a major chunk of 1300MW electricity consumption of Valley," said another senior government official.

J&K police officials claim that militants are desperate to show their presence and instigate a reaction among the masses as there were no protests after the abrogation of special status of the state.

"We are not sure who did this. But this is clearly an act of frustration which would have created trouble for locals. There are people who want to create trouble and incite a reaction from masses," a senior police official told ET.

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Militant, 'active associate' killed in encounter in Shopian

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