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Two JeM militants killed in Shopian encounter

Srinagar, Apr 13 (KNS): Two Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) militants were Saturday killed in an encounter that raged between forces and militants in Gehind area of South Kashmir’s Shopian district.

Officials told KNS that the gunfight broke out in the wee hours of this morning after a search operation was launched in the village following the credible input about the presence of militants there.

They said militants hiding in an apple orchard opened fire upon the search party, which was retaliated, thus ensuing gunfight.

Two JeM militants identified as Abid Wagay of Rawalpora Shopian and Shahjahan Mir resident of Amshepora Shopian were killed in the gunfight, police said.

“According to the police records, both the slain militants were affiliated with JeM. They were wanted by law for their complicity in a series of cases including attack on security establishments and civilian atrocities,” police said.

Police spokesman in a statement issued to KNS said both the militants Abid Wagay and Shahjahan Mir were involved in the abduction and subsequent killings of civilians Firdous Ahmad of Batgund and Nissar Ahmad of Kapran and policeman Balwant Singh of Batgund last year in 2018.

“They were also involved in the killing of a lady Khusboo Jan at Viel Shopian earlier this year. Moreover, both were also involved in killing of a civilian Tanveer Ahmad of Bemnipora at Kachdoora in Shopian. Both of them were also involved in arson and setting ablaze of Panchayat Ghars at Kanjiullar and Ramnagar,” he said.

Police said as per the records, Shahjahan was also involved in snatching of weapons and killing of four police personnel at Arhama Shopian near petrol pump last year in 2018. “Shahjahan was also involved in attack on Police Station Shopian in which one cop Saqib Mohi-ud-Din lost his life and his rifle was snatched. He was involved in the abduction and killing of a young boy Huzaif Ashraf Kuttay resident of Manzgam D.H Pora,” police said.

Several cases were registered against both of them for planning and executing terror attacks on security establishments and killing of civilians in the area, police added.

“Incriminating materials including arms and ammunition was recovered from the site of encounter. All these materials have been taken in the case records for further investigation and to probe their complicity in other cases,” police said.

Meanwhile, police urged people not to venture inside the encounter zone since such an area can prove dangerous due to stray explosive materials. “People are requested to cooperate with police till the area is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosives materials if any,” police said.

Pertinently, reports said scores of youth also sustained injuries during the clashes that broke out near the gunfight site today.

Clashes erupted after the youth took to the streets and pelted stones on government forces, reports said, adding that police retaliated with tear gas canisters, resulting in clashes in the area.

Meanwhile, people in large number participated in the funeral prayers of the slain militants. (KNS)