They were involved in civilian killings: IGP
SRINAGAR, Apr 4: Security forces today killed four militants of Hizbul Mujahideen in South Kashmir’s Kulgam district who were involved in the recent killing of four civilians in the area.
Inspector General of Police Kashmir, Vijay Kumar, told Excelsior that they got information last night about presence of a group of militants in Hardmangori DH Pora in Kulgam district who were involved in the recent killing of civilians in the area.
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Police, 34 RR of Army and 18th battalion of CRPF launched an operation in the village on the basis of an input. During the searches, militants fired on the troops leading to a gun battle which continued for several hours. The militants were hiding in the house of one Mohammad Aziz Lone.
The militants were asked to surrender by the police but they refused and continued to fire on the troops. The encounter continued for several hours. The house in which they were hiding caught fire during the encounter and the militants shifted to a nearby house.
The troops also targeted the house which caught fire. As the firing stopped, the security forces recovered three bodies of militants. The house owner identified two of them. The security forces later searched the debris of the houses from which body of another militant was recovered.
They have been identified as Shahid Sadiq Malik resident of Khull DH Pora Kulgam, Mohammad Ashraf Malik alias Sadam, resident of Arwani district Anantnag, Waqar Farooq Itoo, resident of Hanan Chawalgam DH Pora Kulgam and Aijaz Ahmad Naikoo son of Ghulam Mohammad Naikoo, resident of Chimmer DH Pora Kulgam.
Security forces recovered incriminating materials, arms and ammunitions including one AK-47 rifle, one SLR, one Insas rifle and one pistol from their possession.
The IGP said that when the administration and security forces were busy in COVID-19 duty, these militants resorted to civilian killings in the area. He said that they killed two innocent civilians Hassan Rakha and Sheraj-ud-Din Gossi, residents of Nandimarg DH Pora Kulgam on April 1. On April 2, they also killed another civilian Mohammad Showkat Dar, resident of Fatehpora Anantnag.
Police requested the people to cooperate with them till the area is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosive materials, if any.
The bodies of the militants were taken by the police for postmortem and later they were handed to the next of the kin late in the evening. The bodies will be buried tomorrow.
In the meantime, security forces established fresh contact with the recently infiltrated group of militants in North Kashmir’s forest area near the Line of Control (LoC) today.
Sources said that Jammu and Kashmir Police had provided information to the Army deployed in North Kashmir’s Kupwara district that a group of 5-6 militants are attempting infiltration in Rangdori Behak area.
The group infiltrated during the night intervening March 30 and 31 and on April 1 Army intercepted them leading to a gun battle. However, they fled from the area but Army launched a massive operation to track the militant group.
Inspector General of Police Kashmir, Vijay Kumar told Excelsior that security forces today established contact with the militant group leading to an encounter at Rangdori Behak.
He said that searches against them were also launched in Awaoora, Kumkadi, Zurhuma, Safawali, Batpora and Haihama areas by Army’s 41 RR, 57 RR, 160 TA and SOG Kupwara.