Senior Journalist Shujaat Bukhari and his Special Police Officer (SPO) were killed while another SPO (Driver) was injured when unidentified gunmen fired at them in the heart of city this evening.
Official sources said that Mr Bukhari, Editor of English daily "Rising Kashmir" Urdu daily "Buland Kashmir" and Kashmiri daily "Sangarmal" was boarding his vehicle at Press Enclave office of his newspapers near here when four unidentified gunmen fired at them.
Mr Bukhari, brother of Minister Basharat Bukhari, and his two SPO were injured in the attack. The injured were rushed to hospital where Bukhari and one of his SPO succumbed.
"The health condition of the injured SPO (a driver) was critical," they added.
An emotional Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti -- who reached Police Control Room (PCR), Srinagar, where the body of Mr Bukhari was kept -- said that terrorism has hit a new low with the senior journalist's killing.
48-year-old Bukhari was earlier associated with The Hindu as J&K Bureau Chief. He also remained associated with several local newspapers. He has won a number of awards.
Earlier, reacting to the incident, Ms Mehbooba twitted, "Shocked & deeply saddened by the sudden demise of Shujaat Bukhari. The scourge of terror has reared its ugly head on the eve of Eid. I strongly condemn this act of mindless violence & pray for his soul to rest in peace. My deepest condolences to his family."National Conference (NC) Vice President Omar Abdullah also expressed shock over the incident. "inna lilahi wa inna illahi rajiuun. Shocked beyond words. May Shujaat find place in Jannat & May his loved ones find strength at this difficult time," Mr Abdullah, who is the former chief minister of the state, wrote on micro-blogging site twitter.
Terming the killing of Mr Bukhari as shocking, moderate Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Moulvi Omar Farooq said such inhumanity is unpardonable and condemned in the strongest terms.
"Deeply saddened and shocked by the tragic news of Shujaat Bukharis killing! Such inhumanity is unpardonable and condemned in the strongest terms! Proud son of the soil his death is a huge loss. Shujaat was an erudite intellectual a fearless journalist and above all a selfless," Mirwaiz tweeted.
Terming the incident as shocking, senior CPI(M) leader Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami said such an incident is a direct attack on the freedom of press. Deputy Chief Minister Kavinder Gupta also condemned the attack.
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