Bijbehara: Two Jaish-e-Muhammad militants were killed and a woman was injured during a gunfight between militants and government forces Monday morning, here in Srigufwara area of Bijbehara in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district.
Inspector General of Police (IGP), Vijay Kumar, has maintained that one of the slain militants was a Pakistani national and another was a local. “Both belonged to Jaish,” he said.
Police identified one among the killed militants as Nasir alias Shahbaz alias Baz Bai of Pakistan. But it did not confirm the identity of the second militant. Sources in the police, however, identified him as a local, named Zahid Ahmad Khanday, a resident of Hugam village in Anantnag district.
Police said that bodies of both the slain militants will be sent to north Kashmir after conducting medico-legal formalities including collection of their DNA. “ In case any family claims the killed militant to be their kith or kin, they can come forward for their identification and participation in last rites at Baramulla,” police said.
The injured lady, meanwhile, has been identified as Arifa Jan. A senior police official from the area said that Arifa was moving around in her house when a stray bullet hit her in the abdomen.
“She was immediately shifted to hospital, where her condition is stable,” the police official said.
The gunfight took place in Viday village of Srigufwara. The village was cordoned off at about 3:30 in the wee hours of Monday by a joint team of government forces, acting upon inputs regarding presence of militants in the area.
By 5:30, the police official said, contact was established with the militants who were asked to lay down their arms and surrender.
“The militants, however, opened indiscriminate fire which was retaliated, triggering a gunfight,” the official said, adding that the militants, during the course of the gunfight, shifted their position from a house to a nearby bathroom in a bid to try and escape the cordon.
The gunfight continued for several hours before both the militants were killed, “by around noon on Monday,”
The police have retrieved both bodies of slain militants along with arms and ammunition.
The authorities, soon after first gunshots were fired, snapped mobile internet across Anantnag district, where section-144 has already been imposed on Sunday to prevent “further spread of Corona Virus”.
Despite the communication gag and the restrictions, clashes erupted around the site of the gunfight as some youth tried marching towards the site of the gunfight, local sources told Kashmir Reader.