4 soldiers, militant killed in Kupwara gunfights

Kupwara: Four soldiers were killed in Hafrada forest range of Handwara in Kupwara district in a gunfight that started on Sunday night.
Scores of policemen and soldiers of army’s 6 Rashtriya Rifles launched an operation after receiving inputs that militants were hiding in Hafrada forest range.
A defence spokesman said the soldiers and policemen came under intense fire when they came close to place where the militants were hiding, killing the four soldiers.
The army recovered the bodies of the dead soldiers on Monday morning. Heavy reinforcements equipped with sophisticated and heavy weaponry, along with sniffer dogs, were sent to the area to track down the militants, it was learnt.
The dead soldiers have been identified as Sepoy Surìnder Joshi, Sepoy Buta Satyam, Lance Naik Gurdev Singh and Sepoy Surinder Kumar.
Since the area is remote and civilians have no access to it during gunfights, this newspaper could not independently verify the incident.
In another gunfight, army claimed, an “unidentified militant” was killed in Lolab area of Kupwara district on Monday morning by soldiers of 28 RR and police.
Srinagar-based defence spokesman Lt Col NN Joshi said army has launched a search operations in both places.