2 Hizb Militants Killed In Handwara Encounter

Srinagar—Militants opened firing at a police check post at Sultanpora in the Zachaldara area of Handwara, 100 kms from here, a police official said. The policemen retaliated, killing two militants, he added.

Officials said the gunfight broke out after the militants opened fire at a police party in Zachaldara area of Handwara.

The militants targeted a police checkpoint after dusk, according to the police control room in Handwara.

A police spokesman said the slain militants were identified as Toib of Sopore and Ashiq of Palhallan Pattan.

They were affiliated with the Hizbul Mujahideen outfit, the spokesperson said.

An army spokesman said the militants were killed in a joint operation with police and CRPF. A search was launched in the area after the encounter, the spokesman said.

Meanwhile, after receiving inputs about the presence of militants, government Forces Monday launched cordon and search operation in many places of North Kashmir.

Reports said that Army, Central Reserve Police Force and Special Operation Group of Jammu and Kashmir Police conducted door-to-door search operation in Mir Mohalla of Hajin town in North Kashmir’s Bandipora district.

Pertinently, a group of Lashkar-e-Taiba militants led by Mahmood Bhai is reported active in the belt for quite some time.

Mehmood Bhai, according to a police official, is responsible for multiple attacks on government forces. “We received inputs about the presence of militants in the area and accordingly a search operation was launched. However, no contact with militants was established and accordingly the operation was called off,” official sources said.

In another operation, government forces launched house to house searches and checked identity cards of locals at Rangwar Lalpora area of North Kashmir’s Kupwara district.

‘The operation concluded peacefully as no contact with militants was established,” said an official.

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