3 infiltrated militants killed in Bandipora, operation on

Security forces during encounter at Shokbaba forests in Bandipora district on Saturday. -Excelsior/Aabid Nabi
Security forces during encounter at Shokbaba forests in Bandipora district on Saturday. -Excelsior/Aabid Nabi

Fayaz Bukhari

Srinagar, July 24: Three recently infiltrated militants including two Pakistanis were killed and a soldier was injured in a gun battle in Shokbaba forest area of Sumlar in North Kashmir’s Bandipora district today.
An official said that the operation was still underway and massive searches are being launched to rule out the presence of any more militants. He said that the group had recently infiltrated from Gurez and at least two killed militants are Pakistan nationals.
Acting on a specific information about the presence of militants in Shokbaba forest area, joint teams of police, Army’s 13, 14 and 14 RR and CRPF launched a search operation in the wee hours today. Click here to watch video
As the security forces intensified the searches, the hiding militants opened fire that was retaliated by the troops, triggering an encounter. In the ensuing gunfight, two militants were killed while firing continued in the area.
After a few hours of lull, the contact was once again established with one more militant. An official said that he was hiding under the cover of trees and bushes. “After an intense exchange of fire, he was also killed”, he added.
Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kashmir range, Vijay Kumar told Excelsior that three militants were killed so far and search operation is on.
“One soldier was also injured in the initial exchange of fire who was evacuated to the Army’s 92 base hospital,” the IGP said.
Srinagar based Defence spokesman Colonel Emron Musavi said that one soldier had sustained injuries who was evacuated to base hospital. He also said that the operation was underway.
A police spokesman said that on a specific input generated by police regarding presence of militants in the forest area of Shokbaba Sumlar-Aragam area of Bandipora, a joint cordon and search operation was launched by Bandipora Police, 13RR, 14RR, Para (SF), MARCOS (Marine Commandos) and CRPF in the area.
“During the search operation, the hiding militants fired on the joint search party. The fire was retaliated leading to an encounter. In the initial exchange of fire, one Army personnel of 14RR received gunshot injuries. He was immediately evacuated to hospital for treatment of his injuries,” the spokesman said, adding that in the ensuing encounter, so far three unidentified militants were killed. “However, operation in the area is still going on. Further details shall be communicated as and when the operation will conclude,” the police spokesman said.