6 killed in Kupwara after militants attack army camp

Heavily armed militants today attacked an army camp at frontier district of Kupwara leaving 3 soldiers and 2 militants dead while a civilian lost his life in the protests that emerged over the militant killings.

A civilian was killed in Panzgam area of Kupwara after people staged protest to demand bodies of militants killed in gunfight.

As per reports a 70 year old civilian was killed after he received bullet injury near the army camp which was attacked by militants in Kupwara. Civilians engaged in stone pelting with the forces that left many people injured.

According to officials, the man lost his life as army opened fire on protesters seeking bodies of two militants who attacked the army camp. Local residents of the Panzgam assembled outside the same army camp which had come under attack. They said the people were standing peacefully and were demanding bodies of the slain duo.

“Army soldiers without any provocation resorted to firing on civilian protesters and one of the civilians identified as Muhammad Yusuf, 70, died on the spot. He was hit in the neck with a bullet,” the local witnesses said. Soon after the killing of civilian, the protests which broke out in morning in Panzga, Chowkibal and adjoining villages intensified.

As per defense officials the militant attack took place in the wee hours today. Defence Spokesman Colonel Rajesh Kalia said, “Fidayeen militants attacked the Panzgam army camp close to the Line of Control (LoC) around 4.30 a.m”.  According to officials, the militants were “foreigners” and their identity is being ascertained.

The army soldiers killed in the attack were identified as 26-year-old Captain Ayush Yadav from Kanpur, Subedar Bhoop Singh from Rajasthan and Naik B.V. Ramanna from Visakhapatnam.

 The injured soldiers were flown to Srinagar for treatment, where two of the injured soldiers are stated to be in a critical condition.

 Army officials said that the militants cut through the two-layered barbed wire fencing of the firing range of the camp, after which they lobbed hand grenades and fired indiscriminately.

 According to the officials, Panzgam is the rear administrative area for over nine army units in Kupwara and spread over 240,000 sq metres.  The camp is about 20 km from Kupwara and some 10 km from the LoC.

 The attackers were engaged by the Quick Reaction Team (QRT) and the intense gunfight lasted for 7-10 minutes, the officials said.

 Officials said that at least three AK-47 assault rifles, nine magazines, 156 rounds of AK-47, one Chinese pistol, one pistol magazine, one UBGL and three grenades, three matrix sheets, two GPS, one Smartphone and one radio set were recovered from the possession of the suicide attackers.

 The army spokesman added that two militants were killed in the attack and one managed to escape. However, army has launched an intense search was on to trace him besides a search operation inside the camp also launched.

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