Srinagar- Five local terrorists of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), involved in a series of attacks on Kashmir Pandits, migrant workers and security forces, were killed in an overnight encounter in South Kashmir’s Kulgam district, police said on Friday.
“The terrorists were killed after police and army’s 34 RR launched a joint cordon and search operation (CASO) in Samno village of Damhal Hanjipora area of the district on Thursday evening”, a police spokesperson said.
The search team came under indiscriminate fire from the besieged militants when they approached the suspected spot. The fire was returned, setting off an encounter, he said.
“Later on, CRPF (18BN) also joined the anti-terrorist operation. However, due to darkness the operation was kept on hold till early morning. The cordon remained intact throughout the night & with the help of additional reinforcement the cordoned area was further strengthened,” the spokesman said.
“With the first light on Friday the operation was resumed which resulted in the elimination of five terrorists and recovery of their bodies”, he said.
He identified the slain as Yasir Bilal Bhat alias Humais of Wanpoh, Danish Hameed Thoker, Ubaid Ahmad Padder, Sameer Farooq Sheikh and Hanzal Yaqoob Shah alias Hanzilla, all residents of Shopian. He said all the killed terrorists were linked with LeT/TRF.
As per the police records, the spokesperson said, the slain were categorized terrorists and involved in several crime cases including attacks on police and security forces besides civilian atrocities and attacks on minority pickets.
Sameer Farooq and Danish Hameed, he said, were involved in an attack on a Kashmiri Pandit Sonu Bhat of Chotigam, Shopian. Hameed along with Hanzal Yaqoob Shah, he said, were also involved in a terror attack on outside labourers at Gagren, Shopian on July 13 in which 3 outside labourers got injured.
“Terrorist Sameer Farooq Sheikh was also involved in instigating & luring local youth to join terrorist ranks besides was involved in attack on minority picket at Heepora Batagund, Shopian,” he said.
The spokesperson further said that incriminating materials, arms & ammunition including 4 AK-series rifles, 4 Grenades and 2 Pistols were recovered from the site of the encounter. All the recovered materials have been taken into case records for further investigation.
“In this regard, a case under relevant sections of law has been registered and further investigation is in progress. People are requested to cooperate with Police till the area at encounter site is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosive materials, if any,” he added
‘Terrorist Killed In Rajouri Gunfight’
Police in Jammu said one terrorist was killed in an encounter between militants and a joint team of security forces in Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri district on Friday.
Based on specific information, an operation was launched this morning by a joint team of police, army and CRPF in the Behrote area under the Budhal police station limits, a police spokesperson said.
The Cordon and Search Operation (CASO) was launched based on inputs of suspicious movement in the area, the officials said.
The terrorist opened fire from inside a house on the security personnel while they were moving towards the target, the police spokesperson said.
“The exchange of fire continued for some time and one terrorist has been killed during the ensuing operation,” he added.
One AK-47 rifle, three magazines, three grenades and a pouch have been recovered from the encounter site, he said.
The area is under cordon and search is going on, the official said, adding that the identity of the terrorist is being ascertained.
Searches Underway Along LoC In Poonch
Security forces on Friday launched a search operation after reports of suspicious movement along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir’s Poonch district.
The search operation was launched in forward areas along the LoC, including Gursian and Bhata Durian, official sources said.
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