A local Hizb militant was killed in an encounter with security forces in Reban village of Sopore area in North Kashmir’s Baramulla district on Saturday.
Witnesses said that security forces cordoned off the area during the intervening night of September 8-9 following inputs about the presence of militants in the area.
As the troops zeroed in on the house where the militant was hiding he opened fire resulting in counter action by the forces, an official said.
During the encounter the militant died, he added.
“One Hizb militant, identified as Shahid Ahmad Sheikh of Kachloo Rafiabad has been killed,” the official said.
According to Senior Superintendent of Police Sopore Harmeet Singh, “on a specific input regarding the presence of the militants in the area Jammu and Kashmir Police jointly with 22RR and 173 Bn and 177 Bn of CRPF killed one militant who was holed up inside a house at Reban Nowpora in Sopore town”.
The militant was identified as Shahid Ahmed Shiekh alias Jana, a resident of Kachloo Rafiabad. Sheikh was a district commander of Kupwara district of Hibz Mujahideen militant outfit.
According to the police, the said militant was District Commander of JeM in Kupwara/ Handwara area and was active from last two years in North Kashmir. The said militant was the chief coordinator between JeM and HM in North Kashmir.
The militant was hiding in the residential house of one Fehmeeda Begum W/O Ashiq Ahmad R/O Dangerpora Reban, Sopore.
The police said that one AK47, two AK47 magazines, 23 rounds of AK47, One grenade and one pouch were recovered from the encounter site.
The statement said that the slain militant was involved in a “number of militant activities in North Kashmir, notably in the killing of one Shahnawaz Ahmad Khan S/O Ghulam Rasool Khan R/O Supernaghama, Kralgund Handwara District Kupwara”.
“He was also involved in convoy attacks on Security Forces on Baramulla-Handwara High Way”.
Meanwhile, clashes between youth and security forces were reported soon after encounter news spread in the area.
Reports and eyewitnesses said that youth clashed with government forces at Nowpora and Hadipora area of Sopore during the encounter. However, the police retaliated by lobbing tear gas shells to disperse them.
Meanwhile, the authorities on early Saturday suspended class work in all educational institutes in Sopore town while telephone and internet services were blocked in the district. Except for state run BSNL, private companies were asked to shut down the services in view of law and order situation.