Srinagar- A Hizb-ul-Mujahideen militant involved in Tuesday’s attack on a policeman in south Kashmir’s Shopian district, was killed in an encounter with government forces, police said Wednesday.
Police, army and the personnel of CRPF 178 battalion launched a joint cordon and search operation in Nadigam hamlet of the district on Wednesday morning after receiving specific input about the presence of militants in the village, a police spokesperson said.
During the search operation, he said, as the joint search party proceeded towards the suspected spot, the hiding militant fired indiscriminately upon the joint search party.
The fire was retaliated effectively leading to an encounter.
In the ensuing encounter, the police spokesperson said a militant was killed and his body was retrieved from the site of the encounter. He identified the killed militant as Umar Ishfaq Malik alias Musa of Bongam Shopian.
Malik, a categorized militant, he said, was active since 2020 and was involved in several cases including attacks on security forces and civilian atrocities.
The police spokesperson also claimed that Malik was involved in Tuesday’s attack on ASI Shabir Ahmad at Amishijipora Shopian while he was returning back from a nearby mosque after offering prayers. Malik, he said, was also instrumental in motivating the gullible youth to join militant folds and other criminal activities.
“Besides, he was also providing logistic and other support to the active terrorists in the area before joining the terror ranks. Incriminating materials, arms & ammunition were recovered from the site of the encounter. All the recovered materials have been taken into case records for further investigation,” he said.
“In this regard, a case under relevant sections of law has been registered and investigation has been initiated. People are requested to cooperate with
Police till the area at the encounter site is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosive materials, if any,” he added.
Meanwhile, an army spokesperson said that the encounter raged on after the soldiers apprehended an OGW who revealed the location of the hiding militants in an orchard near the village.
He also said that the operation began at 3:00 am Wednesday and concluded in the afternoon with the killing of Malik, who was active in the area since November 12, 2020.
IGP Calls For Intensified Anti-Militancy Ops
The Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kashmir Vijay Kumar on Wednesday asked government forces to intensify anti-militancy operations in Handwara police district and take necessary measures under law against the militant associates.
Kumar made these remarks on Wednesday while chairing a joint security review meeting of senior officers of Police and CAPFs at Handwara in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district, a police spokesperson said.
On the occasion, he said, SSP Handwara Sandeep Gupta briefed the chairing officer about the prevailing security scenario, recent trend of infiltration, existing security grid, operational aspects and other measures being adopted to counter the challenges in the police district.
“IGP Kashmir while interacting with the officers urged upon them to strengthen the general security grid and ensure great synergy and coordination among the agencies working on ground,” he said.
According to the police spokesperson, Kumar also reiterated the need to adopt proactive measures to enhance the anti-militancy grid by generating specific intelligence and intensify anti-militant operations in their areas and to take all proactive steps for maintaining peace and stability in the district.
“He also emphasized upon the officers to keep strict vigil over the terrorist associates and take all necessary measures under law against them,” the police spokesperson said.
Moreover, he said that IGP Kashmir also expressed serious concern about the different modules of “narco-terrorism” and directed the officers to ensure strict action against criminals involved in it.
Be Part of Quality Journalism
Quality journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce and despite all the hardships we still do it. Our reporters and editors are working overtime in Kashmir and beyond to cover what you care about, break big stories, and expose injustices that can change lives. Today more people are reading Kashmir Observer than ever, but only a handful are paying while advertising revenues are falling fast.