The last surviving Delhi high court blast accused militant Shakir Ahmed alias Chota Hafiz, was gunned down in an encounter in a village of Kishtwar district of Jammu region.
Chota Hafiz was most wanted militant for the September 7, 2011 Delhi High court blast, in which 14 persons were killed and several others were injured. The National Investigating Agency (NIA) was in search of Hafiz since last year and wanted to capture him alive.
"The dreaded Hizbul Mujahideen militant was trapped in village Qadarna of Navapachi area of Kishtwar district around 7:15 pm and was challenged by troops. The militants opened fire at the troops who retaliated in response," said S N Acharya, officiating public relation officer defence Jammu.
The encounter continued for half-an-hour in which the militant was gunned down. One rifle of AK series and four magazines were recovered from his possession.
Chota Hafiz along with Amir Kamal alias Akram and Junaid Akram, were wanted in the Delhi high court blast and NIA had declared Rs. 10 lakh cash reward on each of them. Security forces and police were trying to capture the militant alive but s militant opened fire the gun battle ensued.
Kamal and Junaid Akram were killed earlier, while Hafiz was the only surviving militant accused in the HC blast.
Police sources said that they were in search of Hafiz for past many months and had laid a trap to capture him near his house, where he was expected to see his wife who had delivered a baby recently. In earlier encounters as well security forces tried to capture him alive but he always managed to give slip to forces.
This time as well, when security forces trapped him and asked him to surrender, he opened fire and was killed in the process.