Three local militants including a ‘divisional commander’ on Thursday were killed in a fierce gunfight that erupted in south Kashmir’s Tral, officials said.
Acting on a tip off, army’s 3 Rashtriya Rifles (RR) and police’s Special Operation Group cordoned off Buchoo village in Pulwom district, some 45 kms from here.
“While the initial cordon was being laid around the suspected group of houses, the militants hiding in one of the houses opened heavy fire on the troops and tried to escape. “However, troops reacted swiftly and established an effective cordon and prevented any escape… Thereafter, a fierce gun battle ensued… which lasted for more than an hour,” an army spokesman said.
“Troops responded in a calibrated manner to avoid any collateral damage,” he said. Police termed the killing of three militants as big success.
The army identified the slain militants as Adil Ahmad Mir of Dadsara as ‘divisional commander, Adil Ahmad Shah of Rathsoona and Tariq Ahmad Parray of Lariyar as ‘South Kashmir commander’.
During the gunfight, two army troopers including an officer sustained minor injuries in the militants’ assault, official sources said.
The slain militants were reportedly associated with Hizb-ul-Mujahideen. “Adil Mir and Adil Shah were associated with the militants from 2010-2011 while Tariq joined the ranks of militants in 2013,” sources said.
The Inspector General of Police (IGP) Kashmir, Abdul Gani Mir told media persons after the encounter that the slain militants were wanted since 2010.
“After receiving information about the presence of militants security forces launched operation in which three militants were killed,” the IGP said.
He said: “Adil Mir was their commander and he was also involved in the killing of a village head in Amlar-Tral. The killing of three militants is a big success for police.”
Soon after the encounter ended, people held protests and chanted pro-freedom and pro- militant slogans in Buchoo village, reports said.
In a press release police said: Adil Shah was involved in the weapon snatching from guard room of a picket at Arigam on May 24, 2012, which included 3 SLR with 6 magazines and 150 rounds, 1 INSAS with 2 magazines and 40 rounds and a Motorola wireless set besides 4 triple grenades.
“Last year in 2013, Adil Shah along with other militants was involved the killing of 4 army troopers of RR at Buchoo, a case FIR no. 64/13 under section 302, 307RPC, 7/27 A act stands registered in this regard. He was also involved in case FIR 55/13 u/s 7/25 A Act 120B RPC,” the spokesman said.