Attacks by armed groups on civilians demonstrate contempt for fundamental principles of humanity, said Amnesty International India, following the killing of a local government official in Jammu and Kashmir.

According to police reports, unidentified gunmen took 45 year-old Mohammad Amin Pandit, a sarpanch, from his home in Pulwama district in south Kashmir on the night of 17 April 2014, and shot him fifty yards away from his house. He was declared dead on arrival at a local hospital. No group has claimed responsibility for the killing.

A number of sarpanches or local government officials in Jammu and Kashmir have been attacked by suspected members of armed groups in recent years. Gulzarpora, the town where Pandit was killed, goes to the polls on April 24th.

Amnesty International consistently opposes human rights abuses committed by both armed groups and security forces in Jammu and Kashmir.

The perpetrators in the shooting of Mohammad Amin Pandit must be brought to justice in proceedings that meet international fair trial standards.

Authorities must investigate all human rights abuses promptly, effectively and transparently.