There was widespread anger among Kashmiris over the killing of Moulana Showkat Ahmed Shah [Faisal Khan]

A powerful Pakistan-based separatist group has said a fellow anti-Indian rebel killed a veteran separatist in
Indian Kashmir, in a report released Friday.

The report by the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) said the group initially thought Indian forces had killed Moulana Showkat Ahmed Shah, a respected cleric.

 

Shah headed Jamiat-e-ahle Hadith, a puritanical religious group with nearly 1 million members in Kashmir.

He was killed in April by a remote-controlled bomb rigged to a bicycle near a mosque in Srinagar, the main city in Indian-held Kashmir.

Police within weeks blamed the murder on factional rivalry, arrested three people and accused a senior Lashkar-e-Taiba commander of helping the killers with explosives.

However, the investigation revealed that a member of Pakistan-based separatist group Tehreek-ul-Mujahedin, Javed Munshi, was responsible for the killing of Shah.

'Killer within us'

"We initially thought that the Indian army and the [government] institutions had martyred him to weaken the movement and create misunderstanding between us. We had no idea that the killers would be within us," the report said.

Lashkar-e-Taiba is one of nearly a dozen groups in Kashmir and has been blamed for several attacks in India, including the 2008 Mumbai attacks that killed 166 people.

Separatist groups had vowed to find the killers after widespread anger erupted among Kashmiris over the killing of the religious leader.

Source: Agencies