AGH comdrs killed in Shopian encounter

Troops at the encounter site at Melhora, Shopian on Wednesday. —Excelsior/Younis Khaliq
Troops at the encounter site at Melhora, Shopian on Wednesday. —Excelsior/Younis Khaliq

Fayaz Bukhari

Srinagar, Apr 22 : Two top commanders of Ansar Gazwatul Hind (AGH) were among four militants of the outfit killed in a gun battle with security forces in Melhora village of South Kashmir’s Shopian district today.
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A joint team of Army’s 55 RR, Police and CRPF cordoned off village Melhora last evening after inputs about presence of a group of militants in the village.
During the searches, hiding militants fired upon security forces, which was retaliated, triggering an encounter.
Militants tried to break the cordon amid the exchange of fire; however, the joint team engaged them in the gunfight. The intermittent exchange of fire continued during the night but the fierce exchange of fire took place today morning. All four militants were killed in the encounter.
Inspector General of Police (IGP) Vijay Kumar told Excelsior that they have recovered bodies of four unidentified militants form the encounter site.
“We have taken DNA samples of all four unidentified killed militants. We are conducting burial in presence of the Magistrate. Those who claim the bodies later, their DNA samples will be taken for further course of action”, he said.
The bodies of the slain militants were shifted from Shopian to Police Control Room Srinagar where from the bodies will be taken for burial.
A case under FIR number 28/2020 under Section 307, 7/27 IA Act and 16, 19, 23, 38 ULF Activities Act has been registered in connection with the encounter in Police Station Zainapora.
Sources said that the militants were beyond recognition as their bodies faces were hit by multiple bullets. They have identified the militants as Tariq Bhat alias Luqman Bhai, district commander Shopian of village Khasipora in district Shopian. He was a former policeman and had joined LeT. Later, he joined Ansar Gazwatul Hind.
The second one has been identified as Basharat Shah alias Osama Bhai, district commander Pulwama of village Nikloora Litter in district Pulwama. He was also former LeT member but had later joined Ansar Gazwatul Hind.
The third one has been identified as Wakeel Dar alias Asim Bhai.He also belonged to Nikloora Litter in district Pulwama and was associated with AGH.
The fourth one has been identified as Uzair Bhair alias Qasim Bhai, who belonged to Baramulla town in North Kashmir. He belonged to Hizb but had later joined AGH.


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