File photo of a search operation in Kashmir
Baramulla: After a Jaish militant got killed in north Kashmir’s Handwara, the government forces launched a massive hunt to nab the slain’s associate.
Police officials and witnesses said that two militants appeared on bypass road near fruit mandi and attempted to hurl grenade on policemen who were carrying searches of vehicles. But one of the two militants lost balance and grenade exploded in his hand resulting in his death on the spot, they said. His associate, however, made quick escape by running through paddy fields, they added.
Police, however, claimed that militants fired on the police naka and in retaliation a militant was killed. In the evening, police identified the slain as Ishtiyaq hailing from Pakistan and said he was affliated with Jaish-e-Mohammad.
Later, police, army and CRPF soldiers reached to the spot and launched massive hunt to nab escaped militant. Besides carrying searches, forces also pressed sniffer into service to nab the militant.
North Kashmir which was relatively calm after the 2016 killing of Burhan Wani is steadily witnessing an uptick in militancy. This year several gunfight between local militants and forces erupted in the area, indicating the signs of growing presence of militants. Almost 28 youths including Phd scholar turned militant Mannan Wani joined militancy in north Kashmir this year so far.