SRINAGAR Police on Wednesday killed two militants of the Hizbul Mujahideen, including one of the Valley’s oldest surviving militants, in Anantnag district of south Kashmir.
Inspector General of Police (Kashmir Range) Swayam Prakash Pani said that there was specific intelligence about the presence of militants at Muniward area of Khanabal.
“During the searches, militants fired on the police party, which retaliated leading to an encounter in which two militants were killed. It was a specific operation carried out swiftly by the security forces, Pani said.
The slain militants were identified as Altaf Ahmad Dar alias Kachroo alias Moin of Hawoora Mishipora and Umar Rashid Wani of Khudwani Kulgam.
Kachroo, one of the longest surviving militant, active since 2007, was category A ++ militants and figured in the list of top 12 militants released by the Indian Army after Sabzar Bhats killing last year.
Security establishment classifies militants as A or A++, ranking them in an order of standing with A++ denoting the highest.
A police spokesperson said that Altaf Ahmed Dar son of Late Ghulam Mohammad Dar of Hawoora, Mishipora Kulgam was currently operating as one of the most important militant Commander of the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen. He had a long history of (militancy) records since 2007, the spokesperson said.
Considered as a long time surviving militant in the area, the police claimed he was involved in series of attacks on the government forces and killings of policemen in the area. Several cases were registered against him in different police stations across valley for his activities. Some of the prominent cases include rifle snatching from policemen at Yaripora BSNL Tower. FIR No 208/7 under section 307, RPC, 7/27, Arms Act; FIR No 226/2010 under section 20 ULA (P) Act; FIR No 239/2010 under section 307,RPC 7/27 Arms Act; FIR No 15/2010 under section 307, 392 RPC 7/25 Arms Act in PS Yaripora; FIR No 21/2011 under section 7/25 Arms Act P/S Zadibal Srinagar; FIR No 174/15 under section 307, 392 RPC , 7/25 Arms Act PS Kulgam etc.
Pertinently during the 2016 unrest, police said, he along with Yasin Itoo alias Gaznavi played a major role in instigating people.
Regarding another militant, Umar Rashid Wani son of Abdul Rashid Wani of Khudwani Kulgam, police said, he became active since last year. He was involved in many attacks on security establishments. He was also involved in killing of policemen at Anantnag.
Further in Srinagar city, Umar had carried an attack on CRPF and also escaped from the recent Batmaloo encounter site, the police said.
Several cases were registered against him including 145/17 under section 302, 7/27 Arms Act of Police Station Anantnag in which two JKP cops were (killed) and 173/18 under section 302, 307, 34 RPC, 7/27 Arms Act, 15, 16, 18, 19, 20 ULA of Police Station Batamaloo. Though this group was a part of HM module they had worked in close coordination with other militant outfit, the spokesperson said, adding, Some arms and ammunition was also recovered from the site of encounter.
Thousands Join Last Rites Of Slain Militants, Over 50 Hurt In Clashes
Over fifty persons were injured in clashes with the government forces in south Kashmir parts following the killing of two militants including top Hizb commander Altaf Kachroo in a gunfight on Wednesday.
Reports said that massive clashes erupted in Khudwani after the news of Kachroos death reached there.
They said that the forces fired tear gas and pellets to chase away the protesters who were pelting them with stones.
A health official at sub-district hospital Qaimoh confirmed that 50 injured were brought to the hospital for treatment.
He said that six injured hit by pellets in the eye were referred to district hospital Anantnag for specialized treatment.
Among the six injured, one minor boy with pellets in his left eye was shifted to Srinagar hospital for further treatment.
Meanwhile, thousands of people attended the funeral prayers of both the slain at their respective villages at Hawoora and Khudwani and were later laid to rest.
Meanwhile, over a dozen militants appeared in the funeral of Kachroo at his native Mishipora village and offered a gun-salute.
Authorities in the meanwhile snapped internet services in most parts of Anantnag and Kulgam districts in the wake of the Kachroo’s death.
Train service was also suspended on the Srinagar-Banihal route following the killing and subsequent public outpouring.
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