Youth killed, 2 injured in clashes

Massive anti-militancy operation in S Kashmir

Fayaz Bukhari
SRINAGAR, Sept 3: A youth was killed and two others were injured as security forces used force to quell protests in Pulwama district of South Kashmir during a massive anti-militancy operation that was launched in several villages of the district.
A joint operation was launched by Army’s 55RR, 44RR, 53RR, 182nd and 183 battalion of CRPF and Special Operation Group (SOG) of Jammu and Kashmir Police Pulwama in 18 villages of Pulwama district this morning. The villages where the operation was launched included Murran, Below, Hajin Bala, Shankarpora, Mitrigam, Murran, Zaigam, Rahmoo, Gudoo and Wahibugh.
Security forces laid siege to these villages, which they feel are militant sympathizers and where militants mostly take shelter. However, there was no special input about presence of the militants anywhere in these villages and the operation was launched as part of area domination to put pressure on militants.
Security forces conducted house to house searches in these villages during which people came out at Gusoo and Murran villages and pelted stones at them. The clashes continued for several hours during which security forces fired tear smoke, pellets and one youth Fayaz Ahmad Wani son of Ahsan Wani of Chewa Kalan was hit by a bullet in the head at Gusoo village.
He was rushed to nearby hospital where from he was referred to SMHS hospital Srinagar for treatment where doctors declared him as brought dead. Two more youth also received pellet injuries and have been hospitilized.
The massive operation was launched in the district after recent abduction of relatives of police men in South Kashmir. Around one dozen police men and their relatives were abducted by militants last week from South Kashmir following arrest of father of Hizbul Mujahideen militant commander, Riyaz Naikoo and relatives of the other militants. However, security forces later released Naikoo’s father and relatives of other militants and militants also let off the policemen and their relatives without harming them.
The operation was aimed at putting pressure on the militants ahead of Panchayat and Municipal elections that are being held later this year.
And a People’s Democratic Party (PDP) worker had a narrow escape when militants fired upon him at a village in South Kashmir’s Pulwama district this afternoon.
Militants fired upon Mehraj Ahmad Parra, an active PDP worker at his native village of Naira, Pulwama. However, he escaped unhurt.