Shopian/ Pulwama: Eight militants were killed in two separate encounters in south Kashmir’s Pulwama and Shopian districts in the past 24 hours.
The slain include two militants who had taken refuge inside a mosque in Meej area of Pampore in Pulwama district.
The gunfights broke out yesterday with police confirming a militant killing in each gunfight till late night.
Today, four more militants were killed in the Shopian gunfight, which had broken out at Bandwav area of the district this taking the toll if slain militants in the gunfight to five, police sources said.
The bodies of five slain have been retrieved and their identity and affiliation is being ascertained, an official said, adding that the arms and ammunition have been recovered from the slain militants’ possession.
Defence spokesman in Srinagar Colonel Rajesh Kalia, however, confirmed the killing of four militants stating that the gunfight was still on.
About the Meej encounter in Pampore area of Pulwama, Inspector General of Police Kashmir zone, Vijay Kumar said that “patience and professionalism worked” as the two militants hiding in a mosque had been killed without any use of firing and IED.
“Used tear smoke shells only. Maintained sanctity of the mosque. Both militants hiding inside the mosque neutralized,” IGP Kumar said in a statement.
With the killing of two more militants, the total number of slain militants in Meej gunfight has reached to three.
The eight militant killings come on the heels of statement by IGP Kumar that militancy stands almost wiped out from south Kashmir and the police would now shift its focus on north Kashmir.
A total of 102 militants including top commanders of Hizbul Mujahideen, Jaish-e-Muhammad and Lashkar-e-Taiba have been killed this year so far including Reyaz Naikoo, the chief operational commander of Hizbul, Bashir Koka of Lashkar and Abdur Rehman alias Fouji Bhai of Pakistan, who was an IED expert of Jaish.
Figures suggest that 72 militants including the five slain today, were killed alone since the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic in Kashmir on March 20. In the past two weeks, 32 militants were killed in two southern districts of Shopian and Pulwama.(KNO)