Pulwama Three local militants were killed in an encounter that erupted soon after army accompanied by J&K Police raided Gulab Bagh village of Tral tehsil of Pulwama district early on Tuesday.
The raid sparked protests in the area with residents coming out of their homes and clashing with the armed police. One person was killed after he was hit by shot gun fire by the police. Dozens others were injured, reports from the area said.
According to these reports, a joint team of Army’s 42 RR unit and SOG of Jammu & Kashmir Police launched a search operation in the village after they heard some gunshots.
Police said that the raid was conducted following a specific information about the presence of militants in the village. As the forces were conducting the search operation, the hiding militants fired upon them. The security forces retaliated, leading to an encounter that left three militates dead, police said.
However reports said that the militants were taking bath in a local stream and were zeroed in after which they were gunned down.
The three slain militants were identified as Zahid Ahmad Bhat resident of Nowdal Tral, Mohammad Ishaq Bhat resident of Batagund Tral and Mohammad Ashraf Dar resident of Baghi Trich, Pulwama.
Police claimed that all the three belonged to Zakir Musa group which has recently declared its allegiance to global terror outfit, the Al-Qaeda.
Two AK 47 rifles and one pistol were seized from the encounter site, the police added.
As the news spread markets across Tral and Pulwama closed and protests broke out.
Authorities immediately pulled the plug of all cellular and mobile Internet services barring state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited.
Clashes still erupted at many places. Youth hit the roads and pelted stones on the government forces who in retaliation fired tear-smoke shells and pellets to disperse them.
Clashes also erupted in Khrew area of saffron town Pampore where locals resorted to intense stone-pelting amid pro-freedom slogans.
Reports said that Government Forces resorted to aerial firing to disperse protesters.
Boy Killed In Clashes
A 16-year old boy, Muhammad Younis of Saimoh Tral, was hit by a burst of pellet fire and was critically wounded.
He was removed to nearby hospital where from he was referred to SMHS Hospital in Srinagar. However he died on the way to SMHS.
His body was taken to Tral where thousands of people staged protests in various villages.
Widespread clashes also broke out in Pulwama town between people and government forces. Police resorted to intense teargas shelling on protesters.
The situation in Tral and Pulwama areas was tense when reports last came in Wednesday evening.
The clashes also raged at Pampore area of the district where forces resorted to aerial firing. In Qaimoh area of Kulgam district, forces fired in air after locals clashed with them during a raid on a hospital.
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