Srinagar: Two local Al-Badr militants were killed in an overnight encounter with a joint team of police, army and CRPF in Pulwama district of south Kashmir, officials said on Thursday.
“On a specific input generated by Police regarding presence of (militants) in village Mitrigam area of Pulwama, a joint cordon and search operation was launched by Police, Army’s (44RR) and CRPF in the area,” a police spokesman said in a statement.
During the search operation, he said, as the joint search party proceeded towards suspected spot the hiding militants fired indiscriminately upon search party which was retaliated leading to an encounter.
In the initial exchange of fire, he said, one security force personnel received gunshot injuries. “He was immediately evacuated to hospital for treatment of his injuries. However, the operation was halted to ensure safe evacuation of all the civilians trapped around the encounter site. Moreover, all due precautions were also taken to avoid any collateral damage.”
After evacuation of civilians was done, he said, the operation was resumed. In the ensuing operation, he said, two local militants identified as Aijaz Hafiz of Dalipora and Shahid Ayub of Dheeri Murran linked with Al-Badr were killed and their bodies were retrieved from the site of encounter.
“As per police records both (duo was) categorized (militants) and part of groups involved in a series cases including attacks on Police/SFs and civilian atrocities. They were involved in series of recent attacks on outside labourers in Pulwama.”
Hafiz was involved in firing upon outside labourers namely Sonu Sharma son of Banarasi Dass of Pathankote at Yadder Pulwama, Mohammad Akram son of Abdul Salam of Bijnor UP at Arihal Pulwama and Wishwajeet Kumar son of Parwas Mandal of Banka Bihar at Circular Road Gangoo, Pulwama, the spokesperson said.
“He was also involved in firing upon bank guard namely Abdul Hamid Wani of Tahab Pulwama and Sarpanch Ghulam Nabi Kumar of Panchayat Halqa Arihal B at Arihal Pulwama.” Besides this, he said, Aijaz Hafiz was instrumental in recruiting Shahid Ayoub Sheikh into militants ranks, who too was neutralized in the encounter.
“Ayoub was involved in firing upon two outside labourers namely Patlashwar Kumar son of Jako Choudary and Joko Choudary son of Thaugh Choudary, both residents of Bihar at Lajoora Pulwama.”
Meanwhile IGP Kashmir termed this operation as a “big success and congratulated the joint forces” for neutralizing the militants involved in the recent terror attacks on outside labourers.