Encounter renders 3 families homeless

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Pulwama—The encounter between militants and government forces left three families homeless while apple boxes worth lakhs were destroyed.

The houses of Shiraz Ahmed Lone, Fayaz Ahmed Lone and Ghulam Muhammad Lone were completely destroyed in the gunfight. “We have lost everything. We are finished,” said Fayaz Ahmed.

At least 1200 apple boxes kept in the lawn of one of the houses were completely damaged in the massive shelling.  “Three houses were completely destroyed while five other houses were partially damaged,” he said.

Ghulam Muhammad Lone who lost everything in the gunfight said that his son Aqib Ahmed was picked up by Army shortly after the commencement of the encounter. “He was ruthlessly beaten up and currently he is undergoing treatment at District Hospital Pulwama.

Reports said that the bodies of two non-local militants were shifted to Boniyar Uri in the middle of the night where they were buried in a graveyard. The body of local militant Wasim Ahmed Dar of Drubgam was handed over to the family. Thousands of mourners participated in his last rites. Witnesses said that back to back funeral prayers were held for the local militant. Mourners shouted pro-freedom slogans while women showered flower petals and confectionaries on the body of slain militant.

Meanwhile, Pulwama observed a complete shutdown to mourn the killing of three militants. All the shops and business establishments remained shut while transport also remained off the roads. Internet service also remained suspended in wake of the prevailing situation.

Militants give gun salute to slain comrades

A group of militants Tuesday fired in the air as a form of gun salute at the funeral of one of their associates who was killed in an encounter by security forces in the Pulwama district of south Kashmir last night, a police official said.

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The group, including Sameer Tiger, whose picture with a US-made M4 rifle was seen on social media a few days ago, appeared at the funeral of Wasim Ahmed Ganie and fired a volley of bullets in the air, he said.

The militants also raised slogans before fleeing, the official said.

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