63 militants killed this year so far
Anantnag: Two militants were killed on Tuesday evening in an ongoing “important” gunfight between militants and government forces in Anantnag district of South Kashmir.
With the killing of these two militants, the number of militants slain in 2022 has gone up to 69, as 23 of them were killed in April and six so far in the current month.
“Identities and affiliations of the slain militants is being carried out and will be conveyed shortly,” a senior police official from Anantnag district said.
Inspector General of Police (IGP), Vijay Kumar, has confirmed the killing of the militants, while he termed the gunfight as an important one, “for two reasons,”.
“The militants have been killed in close proximity to NH-44, thus neutralising the threat of an attack on the highway,” Kumar said.
He added that the militants, slain today, are the same ones who had escaped a gunfight in Watnad area on April 6. “An army man was killed in that gunfight,” Kumar said.
The gunfight today raged in Kreeri village of Dooru, here in Anantnag district. The police official from Anantnag said that an operation was launched following specific inputs regarding presence of militants in the area.
“The area was cordoned off at around 5:00 PM today and contact with the hiding militants was established soon,” the official said.
He added that the militants were given a chance to lay down their arms but they opened indiscriminate fire, instead.
“The fire was retaliated and two militants have been killed this far,” the official said, “A combing operation is underway in the area to ascertain any further presence of militants,”
He said that the bodies of the slain militants have been retrieved, along with arms and ammunition, and some incriminating material.
“After completion of medico-legal formalities, the bodies will be sent to North Kashmir for burial,” the official said.
Authorities have refused to hand over bodies of slain militants to their families, since April 2020, when they cited Covid protocol as a reason. They have continued with the practice and the slain militants are being buried at undisclosed locations in North Kashmir, in presence of a few family members.
Today’s gunfight was the second in Anantnag district this month. Earlier, on May 6, two militants of Hizb-ul-Mujahideen including the longest surviving Ashraf Moulvi were killed in the forest area of Batkoot, along Amarnath Yatra route.