‘Lamboo was closely associated with Azhar’
Srinagar, July 31: The mastermind behind the Pulwama attack and top commander of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), Mohammad Ismail Alvi alias Lamboo alias Adnan, was killed along with his associate in an encounter in South Kashmir today.
Inspector General of Police Kashmir, Vijay Kumar, termed his killing as a big success and said that he was an IED expert and the most wanted JeM militant operating in Kashmir. He said that he was a key conspirator of February 14, 2019 Lethpora, Pulwama attack.
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Kumar said that the second militant killed in the encounter has been identified as Sameer Dar an A+ category militant and a resident of Pulwama. He said that Sameer was also involved in Lethpora Pulwama attack and figured in NIA’s chargesheet. He said that out of 19 accused involved in Lethpora Pulwama attack, eight militants have been shot dead so far and five are absconding. He said that Adnan had been named in NIA chargesheet.
He said that Lamboo was closely associated with Jaish chief Masood Azhar and had infiltrated into this side of Kashmir in the year 2017 through Sakargadh Sector.
Earlier, acting on a specific lead, police and Army’s Victor Force launched an operation in the forests of Nambian and Marsar area of Pulwama district. “Today (July 31) morning, contact was established with Lamboo and in a brief exchange of fire, he along with Sameer were killed,” police said.
Police said that Adnan was a highly trained militant especially expert in making of IEDs. “He was instrumental in planning and executing attacks on security establishments and civilian killings. He was also involved in the killing of SPO Fayaz Ahmed, his wife and daughter in Tral, recently,” police said.
“Moreover, the killed militant was carrying out activities in Awantipora, district Pulwama and district Anantnag. He was a close associate of militant Abdul Rehman alias Fauji alias Idrees Bhai of Multan Pakistan who along with two local associates were killed in an encounter at Kangan Pulwama last year. He was trying to re-establish and strengthen JeM outfit and utilize Awantipora especially Kakpora and Pampore areas of Pulwama as a hot bed for receiving new militant groups and transporting them to the other parts for carrying out attacks,” Police said.
“He had also visited several training camps of JeM in Afghanistan and Pakistan. He had earlier escaped from many encounters/cordon & search operations including at Doniwari Chadoora Budgam on 04/03/2020, Parigam Jagir Pulwama on 19/11/2020 & Kalenvan, Bijbehara Anantnag On 07/07/2021,” the police spokesman said. “There were 19 accused /OGWs involved in Lethpora attack case. Out of 19, seven militants including Adil Dar, Mudasir Khan, Umar Farooq, Kamran, Qari Yasir,Sajjad Bhat and today Mohd Ismal Alvi alias Lamboo were killed in encounters, seven militants /OGWs have been arrested and five are still absconding”, Police said.
They added that incriminating materials, arms and ammunition including one AK rifle, one M-4 Carbine, a Glock pistol and Chinese pistol were recovered from the site of encounter.
Addressing a joint press conference at Army’s Srinagar-based 15 Corps headquarter, GOC 15 Corps D P Pandey, IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar and GOC Victor Force termed the killing of Lamboo as a major success for security forces.
The GOC 15 Corps said that Adnan was a master recruiter as he would lure youth into militancy, give them weapons and training as well.
The GOC Victor Force Rashim Bali said Adnan had been fleeing from the cordons by taking advantage of civilians and in today’s operation too, he tried to take cover of two women. “But boys from the Victor Force in a professional manner zeroed in on him and killed him and his associate in just three minutes without a scratch to any civilian,” he said.
The IGP said that this year so far 89 militants have been killed. “The number is less than the previous year but the number of militant commanders is high,” he said.
The GOC 15 Corps said that this year no infiltration bid has taken place. “The number of militants is between 200 to 225 and it is decreasing,” he said.
To a query whether it was true that some boys who had gone to Pakistan on a student visa had picked up arms their and later crossed over to this side, the IGP said: “In total 40 youth had gone to Pakistan on student visa, 27 out of 40 picked up arms and got killed here. Those who are still across are in touch with families, and we are keeping a tab on it”.
Meanwhile, a-52-year-old man from a Gurez in North Kashmir’s Bandipora district died after he was part of a search operation in a forest area in the wake of suspicious movement.
The Army and the police said during the search operation, the man slipped into a nallah, sustained injuries and was taken to Army hospital where he succumbed. Locals of the Tarbal area of Gurez, protest against what they termed his suspicious death.
He has been identified as Mohammad Abdullah Hajam son of Abdul Rahman Hajam a resident of Tarbal. Locals said that he was allegedly called by the local Army unit of (36RR) at Tarbal-the last village near LoC.
The network connectivity was suspended in the entire Bagtore area this morning following the incident. After Hajam’s death, his relatives and locals held a protest in the area. Police managed to pacify the protesters.
A police spokesman said that today army unit of 6 Maratha Li approached Police Post Izmarg Gurez, Bandipora and reported that one Abdullah Hajam aged about 53-54 years, resident of Tarbal was with them for a search operation during the intervening night of 30-31/7/21.
“While conducting a search in a dense forest area along with said person, suddenly he slipped into a deep nallah and got injured. He was shifted to Bn headquarters for treatment. However, despite all possible efforts the injured succumbed to his injuries before being shifted to another hospital,” the spokesman said, adding that on receipt of the report, an inquest proceeding has been initiated into the incident to ascertain the facts & circumstances leading to this incident. “The medico-legal formalities were completed at Sub District Hospital Gurez. Investigation in the matter is in progress,” the police spokesman said.