Two Militants, Soldier Killed In Pulwama Gunfight

Duo Involved In Killing KP, Had Come Together To Conspire, Attack Minorities, Outsiders, Security Forces: Police

Duo Involved In Killing KP, Had Come Together To Conspire, Attack Minorities, Outsiders, Security Forces: Police

Srinagar, Feb 28 (KNS): Two militants and a soldier were killed in an encounter with security forces in Padgampora village of Awantipora in South Kashmir's Pulwama district in the early hours of Tuesday.

Police said that the duo killed militants affiliated with the Resistance Front(TRF), which is an offshoot of the Lashkar-e-Taiba were  responsible for the killing of Kashmiri Pandit Sanjay Sharma on Sunday.
"In a bravely executed operation, based upon specific input, joint forces of the Army, J&K Police and CRPF launched a cordon in Padgampora village of Awantipora," the J&K police said in a statement. "During the search, terrorists hiding inside a mosque opened indiscriminate fire upon search parties and in this initial exchange of fire, two jawans of Army sustained grievous injuries while neutralizing one terrorist on spot. One of the jawans later on attained martyrdom," it said.

The police said extreme caution and limited firepower was used in view of the sacred precincts. Civilians praying inside were also evacuated on time preventing any collateral damage. "Resuming the search for the second terrorist who had holed up inside a bathroom of an adjacent building, again caution was exercised and 14 civilians were rescued from the place before he was neutralized," it said.

They have been identified as Aqib Mushtaq Bhat of Malangpora, Pulwama (A Category) associated with Proscribed terror outfit HM and for past few months working with TRF and Aijaz Ahmad Bhat of Syedabad Pastuna Tral (C-Category) associated with terror outfit JeM and also working in coordination TRF.Click Here To Follow Our WhatsApp ChannelAqib was active since January 2021 and Aijaz was active since May 2022.

"Incriminating materials, arms & ammunition including 01 AK-47 rifle, 01 AK-74 rifle, 01pistol, 03 grenades, 02 pouches, 05 AK magazines, 02 pistol magazines, 103 AK rounds, 20 pistol rounds and 02 Aadhar cards were recovered from the site of encounter," it added.

"Investigation so far revealed that both the terrorists, although joined through different terrorist organisations, had come together to conspire and attack minorities, outsiders, other vulnerable targets and security forces," the police said.

It said that they were involved in FIR No. 14/2023 of PS Litter (recent killing of Kashmir Pandit Sh. Sanjay Pandita at Achan, Pulwama), FIR No 82/2022 of PS Pulwama (attack on 2 outside labourers at Lajoora), FIR No 115/2022 of PS Tral (weapon snatching attempt), FIR No 76/2022 of PS Tral (OGW module which supported them for grenade lobbing) among many other cases.

ADGP Kashmir paid rich tributes to the martyr soldier and appreciated joint efforts of police and security forces for conducting such a complex operation where a hostage situation was defused tactfully and also the sanctity of the mosque was maintained.(KNS)

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