Unidentified gunmen shot dead a veteran journalist and his police bodyguard on Thursday in Srinagar, the disputed region's main city, police and witnesses said.
Shujaat Bukhari, editor of an English language daily Rising Kashmir, had just entered his vehicle outside his office in the city's press enclave when assailants fired several shots from close range.
“He (Bukhari) is no more. One of his two police bodyguards also died in the attack,” a top police officer told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Another police guard and the driver of the vehicle were critically wounded in the attack.
Fellow journalists were on the scene soon afterwards. Bukhari was slumped over in the back seat, one of the police bodyguards had a gruesome wound to the head.
Bukhari was a protected journalist, guarded by two armed policemen round the clock, in a disputed area of India where political violence and threats to reporters is commonplace.
Witnesses said Bukhari died on the spot while the assailants fled immediately after the attack. No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.
The attack comes a day before a unilateral halt in military operations as Muslim holy month of Ramazan comes to an end.
Groups fighting for the independence of Kashmir or its merger with Pakistan have rejected the brief religious “ceasefire”.