Militant killed in Kulgam identified as Pakistani Jaish IED expert and sharpshooter
Srinagar: Three militants, two identified by police as Shakoor Farooq Langoo of Barthana Srinagar and Shahid Ahmad Bhat of Bijbehara Anantnag, and the third yet to be identified but said to be a Srinagar youth, were killed in a gunfight with government forces on Sunday at Pozwalpora Gil Kadal near Soura area of Srinagar.
This was the second encounter in the summer capital in a month. Hizbul Mujahideen commander Junaid Sehraie alongside his aide was killed in Nawakadal on May 20.
In the wee hours, residents in and around Gil Kadal area were taken by surprise with the presence of a large number of police and CRPF soldiers. Their purpose soon became clear when searches began for militants hiding in the locality. A gunfight between militants and government forces started around 9 am. Mobile internet was snapped early in the morning.
Before the gunfight began, the holed-up militants, according to police, were “repeatedly warned to surrender through family members and community members, but instead they started firing indiscriminately upon the search party, which was retaliated to.”
Police identified two of the three slain militants. Shakoor Farooq Langoo, they said, was involved in the killing of two BSF personnel at 90 Ft Road Soura on May 20 and the rifle he had snatched from the personnel at the time was recovered from the gunfight site.
While police maintained that the identity of the third slain militant was “yet to be ascertained”, sources identified him as 18-year-old Mohsin Ahmad hailing from Dar Mohalla Soura.
Locals from Soura area told Kashmir Reader that as soon as the gunfight ended, rumours started doing the rounds that the “unidentified” slain militant was Mohsin, who is believed to have joined militant ranks around a month ago.
However, in the meantime, unconfirmed reports identified the slain as one Hilal Ahmad Dar, a Phd scholar from Srinagar’s Bemina area, who had recently gone missing after leaving for a trek in Gangabal in Ganderbal.
But scores of youth, as per an eye-witness, assembled at main chowk Soura demanding Mohsin’s body be handed over to them. This ensued into street protests.
Since the outbreak of Covid, bodies of killed militants are being taken by police to a Baramulla graveyard for burial.
The trio, according to police, were affiliated with Hizbul Mujahideen/ISJK.
Inspector General of Police Kashmir Vijay Kumar hailed the teams of Police and CRPF for “conducting a clean and successful operation in a very congested and densely populated area of Srinagar with no collateral damage”. Meanwhile, the militant killed in Kulgam a day ago was identified by police as Tayab Waleed alias Imran Bhai, a Pakistani national affiliated with Jaish-e-Mohammad.
Police said that the slain was an operational commander of JeM and was an expert in making IEDs besides being a sharpshooter. “Arms and ammunition including one AK rifle, one M-4 Carbine, a pistol and other incriminating material was recovered from the site of encounter,” police said.