Srinagar, Jan 12 : A day after gunning down a sarpanch in Jammu and Kashmir's Baramulla district, separatist militants struck again Saturday, shooting and critically injuring a woman panch in the same district, police said.

"Militants shot at Zoona, wife of Muhammad Ramzan, resident of Harda Shiva village near Sopore town this (Saturday) evening. The injured woman has been shifted to hospital for treatment in a critical condition," said a police officer.

The woman is a panch of Harda Shiva village council and is affiliated with the Congress.

Militants had Friday shot and killed a sarpanch in his own house in Bomai village near Sopore town.

After their election in 2011, thousands of panches and sarpanches have been demanding security cover in the wake of killings of three of them in Baramulla district.

While the state government maintains it is committed to protect the elected village representatives, it says providing individual security to all of them was not possible.

The state government has considered individual security in specific cases based on threat perceptions, but mounted vigil by the security forces in vulnerable areas where guerrillas are believed to be still operating.


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