Indian YouTuber Amreen Bhat killed in Kashmir by suspected militants

Police say her nephew, Farhan Zubair, is undergoing treatment for a bullet injury to his arm

Amreen Bhat, 35, from central Kashmir’s Budgam district, had a significant following on social media websites, where she posted satirical and comedy videos. Photo: Youtube screengrab
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A social media artist was shot dead and her 10-year-old nephew wounded after suspected militants broke into her house in Kashmir, police have said.

Amreen Bhat, 35, from central Kashmir’s Budgam district, had a significant following on social media websites, where she posted satirical and comedy videos.

Police said a group of militants broke into her house late on Wednesday and opened fire, leaving her critically injured.

"She was shifted to hospital in an injured condition, where doctors declared her dead,” police said in a statement.

Her nephew, Farhan Zubair, is undergoing treatment for a bullet injury to his arm, police added.

Authorities have blamed armed group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which often attacks government forces or their supporters, for the killing. However, no militant group has claimed responsibility.

Police said the area was cordoned off and a search had begun for the attackers.

India's Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel stand guard on the banks of Dal Lake, a famous tourist attraction in Srinagar, Kashmir, on May 26, 2022. Reuters

Ms Bhat had about 50,000 followers across social media platforms and occasionally performed in live shows.

Her murder comes amid a string of militant attacks on government forces, non-native workers, and Kashmiri Hindus.

A Kashmiri Hindu government employee was shot dead in his office earlier this month, followed by the killing of three policemen, in separate attacks over the past two weeks.

There has been an increase in armed violence in the restive region this year. Tensions remain high following New Delhi’s shock decision to strip the region of its limited autonomy in 2019.

At least 62 incidents of militant attacks had been recorded until May this year, according to official data, while more than 70 militants have been killed by government forces.

Last week, suspected militants lobbed a grenade inside a newly opened liquor shop in the northern Baramulla district, killing a store employee and injuring three others.

Updated: May 27, 2022, 5:33 AM