Srinagar: Three Hizb-ul-Mujahideeen militants were killed in an overnight gunfight in Kashmir’s Tral village in Pulwama distrct on Thursday morning.
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The encounter between government forces and militants broke out yesterday evening after the former received tip-off about the presence of trio in a residential house.
The official identified the slain as Mohammad Ishfaq Parray alias Newton son of Mohammad Ismail Parray of Laribal Tral, Asif Ahmad Mir alias Chotu son of Mohammad Yusuf Mir of Dadasar Tral and Aashiq Hussain Bhat son of Mohammad Shabhan Bhat of Charsoo Anantnag.
While the encounter was raging yesterday, people attempted to march towards the site of encounter continuously and raised pro-freedom slogans to help militants escape. However, their attempt to move towards the encounter site was foiled by the forces. This comes in the backdrop of an advisory asking people to stay away from encounter sites. Pro-freedom songs were also played on public address systems of Masjids to drum up support for the trapped militants.
Similar public protests erupted during the three-day long gunfight at Pampore last week.The massive public support has worried police, who are drawing a strategy to curb participation of people in protests during encounters. The move has promoted the authorities to impose section 144 Crpc within 2.5 km radius of the site of encounter. The Act makes assembly of more than four people punishable.
One among the slain militants Ishfaq had earned the nickname Newton in the village for his meritorious academic graph and had attained close to 99 percent in class 10. The teenager joined the militant outfit Hizb last year. Similarly, slain Asif Ahmad, who joined militant ranks in 2013, had completed his bachelors. The slain were part of the group whose pictures Police had published in several villages of Tral last year.