Forces kill three militants in Budgam encounter

Three militants were killed in an overnight encounter by government forces in Budgam district here.

According to police the three militants were killed in the gunfight that continued through the night

after it had started yesterday evening. Police said that the dead bodies of the militants along with their weapons were recovered by security personnel. 

Police officials said that the encounter was triggered on Tuesday evening between the security forces and militants in central Kashmir’s Budgam district. Acting on a specific tip off about the prescience of militants in a Budgam area, officials said that security forces had launched a cordon and search operation in Redbug area of Budgam.

The cordon and searches were launched jointly by the police and the paramilitary force personnel. The incident came only a day after the attack on the Amarnath Yatra pilgrims that killed seven people, mostly women, and injured 19 others.

An official said that the militants were killed when forces targeted the house they were trapped in.  “They were killed outside the house after they came out and tried to break the cordon,” he said. The deceased militants  have been identified as Javid Sheikh, a resident of Saadpora Churpora Narbal, Sajad Ahmad Gilkar of Nowhatta and Aaquib Gul of Goripora Hyderpora. The trio are  believed to have  belonged to Hizb-ul-Mujahideen militant outfit.

An official said that the gunfight had erupted last night after army and personnel from the special operation group (SOG) group of Jammu and Kashmir police cordoned off the Radbugh village in Bunmakhama area of Magam.

“As the forces approached the suspected spot, the militants hiding there, opened fire, triggering off an encounter,” he said.

Three weapons have been recovered from the gunfight site, said the official. He said that there was a specific intelligence input about the presence of militants in the area. Meanwhile, as per reports at least four rounds of funeral prayers were held for slain Hizb-ul-Mujahideen militant Tafazul Islam alias Javid Sheikh at his ancestral Churpora (Sadpora) village of Narbal in central Kashmir’s Budgam district. As per reports Islam was laid to rest amid pro-freedom and pro-Pakistan slogans and people also hailed militant commander, Zakir Moosa.

Tens of thousands of people participated in his funeral prayers in which banners extolling slain Hizb commander Burhan Wani were waived by the mourners. A complete shutdown was observed in Magam, Aripanthan, Narbal and Beerwah area of the district to mourn the militant killings.

Meanwhile, police in a statement issued here said that the three militants affiliated with HM were killed in the encounter. Two security personnel were also injured during the encounter who were shifted to hospital for treatment.

The slain militants were identified as Aaqib Gul son of Ghulam-ud-din Dar resident of Gooripora Sanatnagar, Budgam, Javaid Ahmad Sheikh son of  Wali Mohammad Sheikh resident of Churpora Beerwah and Sajad Ahmad Gilkar son of Nazir Ahmad resident of Malaratha  Nowhatta, Srinagar, police said.

They were involved in recent weapon snatching incidents occurred in the South  and Central Kashmir. They were also involved in antinational activities, unlawful activities, damaging of government property and stone pelting incidents, it added.

Javaid Sheikh  was involved in a number of attacks on SFs/ Police in Central Kashmir.

Sajad Gilkar played key role in the murder of  DySP Mohammad Ayoub Pandith of Security Wing, who was lynched to death at Jamia Masjid Nowhatta, Srinagar. After the incident he went underground and joined HM militant ranks.

He was also involved in grenade attacks on CRPF at Nowhatta on 02.04.2017, CRPF camp SafaKadal on 11.06.2017 and grenade attack on Police Party at Khanyar on 30.04.2017. He was involved in attack on Abdul Qayoom in Barzulla on 24.05.2017 and Army convoy near SKIMS Bemina on 1st of April this year, the statement said.

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