While three militants including a Lashakr-e-Taiba commander Mukhtar Bhat were shot dead in Pulwama, a local Hizbul Mujahideen militant was shot dead in Anantnag district.
Police Mukhtar Bhat was planning a Fidayeen attack along with a foreigner .
The gunfight erupted this evening in Khandipora Awantipora in Pulwama when joint forces were carrying out a cordon and a search operation (CASO) in the area.
“During the search operation, the hiding terrorists fired upon the joint search party which was retaliated leading to an encounter,” a police officer said. “ In the encounter three terrorists were killed.”
“Among the killed terrorists, one is a foreign terrorist and another one is a LeT terrorist commander identified as Mukhtar Bhat while as the identification of the third killed terrorist is being ascertained,” the spokesman said.
An RPF personnel was killed and ASI was wounded in a militant attack at Kakapora in Pulwama district on April 18, . The ASI later succumbed days later . On July 17, an ASI of CRPF was killed in a militant attack at Gangoo Crossing in Pulwama.
An AK-47 rifle, an AK-56 rifle and a pistol was recovered from Pulwama encounter site
Additional Director General of Police, Kashmir Vijay Kumar termed the killing of the trio a big success for forces and added that Police and Army averted a major terror incident.
The gunfight broke out at Semthan Bijbehara Anantnag this afternoon during a CASO following input regarding the presence of militant in the area.
“One local terrorist identified as Shakir Ahmad son of Habibullah resident of Ladermud was killed in the encounter,” police said, adding the slain was linked with Hizb.
Police said the three “hybrid” militants- a term coined by police for the militants who slip back into normal lives and have no police records- were associated with Lashkar-e-Taiba’s “The Resistance Front”. Two of them were arrested at a checkpoint in Harnambal,.
“Today at a Naka in Harnambal, Srinagar Police arrested hybrid terrorists Aamir Mushtaq Dar of Iqbalabad Sozaith Budgam and Kabil Rashid of Sicop Mohalla HMT Srinagar. Two grenades were recovered from their possession. They disclosed the name of their another associate Aqib Jamal Bhat of Sozaith Budgam who was also arrested and during initial examination disclosed about an IED in his possession. The IED of approximately 10kg has been recovered in Rangreth on his instance, by a joint team of Srinagar Police and 62 RR,” a police statement said.
Police said a case has been registered under the relevant sections of UAPA, explosives act and Arms Act in Police Station Chanpora.
Further investigation is on to unearth more facts, police said.