April 8, 2004: Save Kashmir Movement claims attack on Indian election rally

On this day in 2004, a grenade exploded at an election rally in India-held Kashmir killing nine people and wounding over 50.

URI, INDIA – When it comes to terrorism, some groups are better at publicity than others. This doesn’t mean the lesser known groups are not dangerous.

Most organisations have Public Relations or Communications departments to ensure their services are well-advertised to potential supporters. Terrorist organisations, the larger ones especially, are no different.

Some groups such as ISIS and Al Qaeda are known for both their heinous acts of terrorism as well as their omnipresent propaganda. Social media companies are run off their feet trying to keep on top of the publicity-seeking videos and publications groups like these ones put out in order to draw attention to their causes and gain new members to their ranks.

But not every terrorist group is equally talented in propaganda and publicity.

I recently published a podcast detailing some of the top ten worst terrorist group names. These groups clearly did not have the brightest individuals involved in their Public Relations.

Today’s featured attack is another example of what happens when a group doesn’t manage its propaganda well.

On this day in 2004

A grenade exploded at an election rally in India-held Kashmir killing nine people and wounding over 50. The rally was being held by the People’s Democratic Party, the state’s governing party, and both the tourism and finance ministers were injured.

In the immediate aftermath of the attack, a man from the little-known rebel group Save Kashmir Movement claimed responsibility. However, authorities dismissed this claim blaming the attack instead on either Islamist insurgents or protestors against the re-opening of the highway between the capitals of divided Kashmir.

Despite the fact that the Save Kashmir Movement had already been active for two years at this point, they were still largely unknown in the area.

Perhaps they need to improve their public relations department before they start claiming attacks.

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By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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