An attack in the Indian state of Kashmir that killed a senior police officer and injured dozens of others has triggered a national debate over whether security forces are to blame for the deadly attacks, including in the face of mounting evidence of Pakistani complicity.
The Indian government on Thursday identified two attackers as the Pakistani Taliban and an unnamed militant group.
Pakistani media reported that two of the attackers were from the northwestern tribal region of Balochistan.
The Pakistani Taliban have claimed responsibility for the attack, but the Pakistani government has not publicly confirmed its authenticity.
The Indian government has long maintained that the Baloch separatist movement, which has fought for autonomy from Pakistan for decades, is a foreign terrorist organization that has carried out attacks across the country.
The Pakistani Taliban has claimed responsibility.
The attack in Kupwara, in the northwestern province of Rajouri, has raised the specter of an expanded and increasingly deadly insurgency that has killed thousands in recent years and displaced millions more.
It was also a major blow to India’s security forces, which are among the most feared of the security forces fighting the insurgency.
The Taliban has been blamed for numerous deadly attacks across Pakistan and India, including the 2014 bombing of a church in Peshawar, Pakistan, that killed more than 130 people.
Kupwar attackers were arrested by the Indian army in 2015 and have been held in Indian jails.
India is currently grappling with an outbreak of severe food shortages across parts of the country and a massive wave of suicides that has taken the lives of thousands of young people, most of them in Punjab, the state where the attack took place.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Indian army chief General Bipin Rawat have both visited the affected region of Kashmir and visited the site of the attack in April, urging calm and offering a $2 million reward for information leading to the capture and conviction of the assailants.
The government has also pledged to increase security in the state, saying it would increase surveillance of security forces.
The military says the security situation is not at the point where it needs to be.
The militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba has claimed credit for the attacks in recent weeks.
It has previously claimed responsibility in multiple incidents for attacks in the country’s troubled border regions, including on Indian army posts.