Five more militants were killed in a 3-day long gun battle at Hafrada forests in North Kashmir’s Kupwara district while as fresh clash erupted between Indian army and Pakistani troopers in Uri sector of Baramulla district Thursday. Over all 10 militants were killed so far since last three days across Kupwara forests.
GOC of the Srinagar-based 15 Corps, Lt General Gurmit Singh while addressing a press conference at Badami Bagh, Srinagar said that 72-hour-long Hafrada operation in Rajwar, Handwara concluded Thursday with the killing of five Lashkar-I-Toyiba militants.
He said that two of our jawans also sustained injuries, and “their condition is improving now”. He however, said that search operation is still in progress in the dense forest area. “The bodies of all the slain militant have been recovered with huge quantity of war like stores including under barrel grenade launcher”, he said.
GOC said that with the killing of 5 militants in Hafrada, toll took to 10 in overall operations in North Kashmir including Keran sector and Machil sector since last three days.
He said that 4 militants were killed in Machil sector two days ago after a group of 5-6 militants tried to sneak in to this side. “However their attempt was foiled by our alert troops deployed in the area.”
“1 AK-56 with 1 magazine, 2 ammunitions, 20 rounds, a pistol with two magazines, 15 rounds, pistol with modified butt with a magazine and a round, a twelve-bore single barrel gun, 23 twelve-bore live cases, 4 Chinese grenades, a binocular, a bag with medicines and food items were recovered from the site,” he said.
On July 29 last month, a militant was killed in Keran sector after a group of 3-4 militants tried to sneak into this side, thus foiled the attempt by killing one of the intruder and injuring 2 others.
“A fresh operation has been launched in most parts of Lolab forests and Tanghdar sector following the inputs regarding the presence of militants in the area”, he said, adding that it is premature to divulge the further details. “The operation is still in progress in all the sensitive forest areas of Kupwara district,” he added.
Responding to a question on the increased number of infiltration bids, the GOC said: “The militants may think it may be easy to infiltrate in these months (during summer) but our counter infiltration grid is alert and we are always ready for the challenge.”
Lt General Gurmit Singh claimed the number of infiltration attempts is rising as compared to previous year. He said attempts were still being made to send more militants into this side.“Though the number of infiltration (attempts) has gone up this year but we have not lowered guard,” he said, adding the troops are still on high alert to foil any such attempt.
He said besides intensifying night and foot patrolling, fencing and installing latest equipment has helped to curb the infiltration menace to quite an extent. “We have excellent intelligence network in place to take on challenges concerning us as there is excellent synergy between intelligence agencies and security forces and the present security situation in Valley is under control,” GOC said.
We have effective intelligence in place as we have excellent grid support from the intelligence and security forces and they are doing good job,” Gurmit added.
GOC also lauded the role of other security agencies including JKP for their role during these operations.
Meanwhile, a fresh ceasefire violation was reported at Kamalkote sector of Uri in frontier Baramulla district early Thursday, sources said.
They said that Army’s 11 Madrass and Pakistani troopers exchanged an hour long firing in the sector, however, no loss of life reported, the sources added.