Indian Women Told: Cover Up or Face Acid Attack
Pro-al-Qaeda group posts warnings in Kashmir
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 13, 2012 4:53 PM CDT
In this photo taken Friday, Jan. 15, 2010, Pakistani acid attack survivor, Somi Khalid, 26, waits her nurse Nadia for an examining at the Acid Survivors Foundation (ASF) in Islamabad, Pakistan.    (AP Photo/Muhammed Muheisen)

(Newser) – A radical Islamic group in India has promised to kill or maim women who go unveiled or use cell phones in the open, the Telegraph reports. A note posted on mosques in the state of Kashmir warned that "if we spot any woman without purdah [head and face covering] we will sprinkle acid on her face," and "if we spot any girl using mobile phone, she will be shot dead." The note was signed by al-Qaeda Mujahideen and mentioned an affiliated group, Lashkar e al-Qaeda.

The threat comes as India grows more concerned about acid attacks on women, which are already common in neighboring Pakistan. But "women in Kashmir are more empowered than women from other conflict zones," says an analyst. "There have been campaigns to force women to wear veil but it didn’t sustain for long.” A police official fears that local militants are trying to recruit members with the campaign: "We have cases of militants trying to engage boys of 12," he says.