Guns Fall Silent in Pampore After 18 Hours, 2 Militants Killed

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KO Photo: Abid Bhat

Srinagar: Two Pakistani militants of Lashkar-e-Taiba were killed while another laid down his arms during an 18-hour-long encounter with state forces in Pampore town of Pulwama district, officials said Friday.

The anti-militancy operation resumed in the wee hours on Friday after being suspended by the combined forces on Thursday night due to darkness, a police spokesperson said. He said in the firefight that started this morning, one holed-up militant was killed.

“However, the opportunity to surrender was yet again offered to the other trapped militants, as a result of which one of them laid down his arms and surrendered before the joint forces,” the police spokesperson said, adding “The militant in injured condition was removed to hospital for treatment,”

The police identified him as Khawar Sultan Mir of Drangbal locality of Pampore associated with LeT.

The police spokesperson further said that the third holed-up militant was killed in the afternoon by the state forces. He said two bodies of militants, believed to be Pakistani nationals of LeT were retrieved from the encounter site.

“Incriminating materials including arms & ammunition recovered from the site of encounter have been taken into case records for further investigation and to probe their complicity in other crimes,” he said.

“In this connection a case under relevant sections of law has been registered and investigation has been initiated,” he added.

The police spokesperson also urged people to cooperate with police till the area is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosive materials, if any.

Pertinently, the encounter started on Thursday evening when a team of army’s 50RR, Special Operations Group (SOG) of police and paramilitary CRPF launched a cordon and search operation in Lalpora village of Pampore after receiving specific input about the presence of militants.

Meanwhile, IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar has congratulated the joint team of state forces for showing utmost patience and exhibiting professionalism, which resulted in saving the life of a local “misguided youth”.

“The local misguided youth are always welcomed to return to mainstream. This year has been successful as many of them are returning and has reiterated his appeal to them to shun the path of violence,” Kumar added.

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