Shopian Gunfight: Slain Militants Identified

SRINAGAR: Two militants killed in a gunfight with the counter-insurgent forces in Melhora area of south Kashmir’s Shopian district were affiliated with Hizbul Mujahedeen outfit, police said.

A police spokesman in a statement said that on October 19, 2020, at about 1720hrs, based on specific input about presence of militants in village Melhoora area of Shopian, a joint cordon and search operation was launched by Police, 55RR and 178BN CRPF in the said area.

“During the search operation, as the presence of militant got ascertained they were given the opportunity to surrender however they fired indiscriminately upon the joint search party, which was retaliated leading to an encounter. In the initial exchange of fire one militant was killed and due to darkness the operation was suspended however the whole area was put under strict cordon,” said the spokesman.

He said that in the wee hours, the operation was resumed and one more militant was killed.

“Bodies of both the slain militants were retrieved from the site of encounter. They have been identified as Towseef Ahmad Khanday son of Abdul Salam Khanday resident of Hangulbuch Kulgam and Umar Thoker son of Gulzar Ahmad Thoker resident of Shiganpora Kulgam, both affiliated with proscribed outfit HM. Both of them were involved in recent attacks in Kulgam-Shopian areas,” said the spokesman.

“Incriminating materials including arms and ammunition were recovered from the site of encounter. All the recovered materials have been taken into case records for further investigation and to probe his complicity in other terror crimes,” he said.

“Keeping in view the prevailing pandemic due to COVID-19 and to ensure the safety of people from the inherent risk of contracting the infection, the dead bodies of the killed militants shall be sent to Baramulla for burial after completion of all medico-legal formalities. The nearest family members of the killed terrorists shall be allowed to participate in the last rites,” he added.

“In this connection, a case under relevant sections of law has been registered and investigation has been initiated. People are requested to cooperate with police till the area is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosive materials if any,” said the spokesman.

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