Political parties in Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday demanded an investigation into the killing of a suspected militant in Shopian district.

The militant, identified as Imran Bashir Ganaie, was arrested for his alleged involvement in the killing of two labourers from Uttar Pradesh in the early hours of Tuesday.

The police had identified him as a hybrid militant and a member of terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba. Hybrid militants are those who carry out attacks and subsequently continue to pose as civilians.

He was killed early on Wednesday in firing by another militant when the authorities launched an anti-terror operation in Shopian’s Naugam area, the Kashmir Zone Police claimed.

Former Chief Minister of Jammur and Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti said that the security forces have used a “dubious nomenclature” of identifying Ganaie as a hybrid militant.

“Imran Ganaie arrested by the police and then killed in their custody allegedly by another militant defies logic and deserves a thorough investigation,” Mufti wrote in a tweet.

After a meeting at her party’s office, Mufti said there was a “catch-and-kill” policy in the Union Territory, reported PTI.

“This has been earlier used in Punjab...it looks like there will be attempts to disturb the peace here as the elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh draw closer so that the BJP can get the maximum benefit from Hindu-Muslim polarisation,” she alleged.

She said the security situation in the Kashmir region has deteriorated. “If militants can kill someone in the custody of police with such ease, it goes on to show what could be the fate of ordinary people,” the Peoples Democratic Party chief added.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) state secretary Ghulam Nabi Malik also sought an investigation into the killing. “It is widely perceived that the said person had not been involved in any unlawful activity,” Malik told PTI.

National Conference MP from Anantnag Hasnain Masoodi called for an independent and impartial inquiry into the killing of Ganai. The politician said that civilian killings call for “outright condemnation and cannot be condoned on any ground whatsoever”.

The two labourers who were killed on Wednesday were identified as Monish Kumar and Ram Sagar, both residents of Kannauj in Uttar Pradesh. They sustained multiple splinter injuries in a grenade attack by suspected militants and were taken to a nearby hospital, where they died.