Shopian: Government troops on Saturday launched a major cordon and search operation (CASO) in ten villages of Shopian district. They conducted house-to house searches but could not find any militant. The CASO was called off later in the day and no violence was reported during the operation.
Residents of these villages told Kashmir Reader that army, paramilitary and SOG men laid siege to about ten villages that included Ratnipora, Dangam, Tekipora, Ranipora, Pratabpora, Wangam, Zaipora, Mantribug and Chakoora. Police sources said that joint parties of 62 RR of Army, 14th battalion of Central Reserve Police Force, and Jammu and Kashmir Police conducted house-to-house searches in the villages. They said that the operation concluded peacefully, without spotting a militant in the area.
On August 3, an army major and a soldier was killed in a militant attack at Zaipora hamlet.
On May 4 this year, a major CASO was launched in about 17 villages of the district to flush out militants, but no militant was spotted in that operation. The May 4 operation saw huge resistance from the local people and clashes were reported from several areas. The government forces allegedly vandalised 200 houses and 150 cars and beat up dozens of civilians. When the soldiers were returning to camp, militants attacked their vehicle near Killora village and a civilian driver was killed of bullet wounds.
Senior Superintendent of Police Shopian, SA Dinkar told Kashmir Reader that after information of presence of militants in the area, the suspected houses were searched by a joint team of police and army. “No contact with militants was established. People of the area cooperated with the security agencies in conducting the search operation,” he said.