Militant sharpshooters shot dead two policemen in north Kashmir's Handwara area on Saturday.
Nearly three militants shot the two on-duty Indian Reserve Police constables at a point-blank range around 11.10am.
Police investigators told Hindustan Times that the militants were highly trained and fired only two bullets at the cops. “Bullets were fired at their neck and pierced through their head,” said Shakeel Ahmad, Handwara sub-divisional police officer (SDPO).
The fatally injured policemen succumbed to injuries at a nearby hospital. The police have recovered two empty bullet shells from the spot.
The slain cops have been identified as Santosh Singh (26), a resident of Kathua district, and Azad Chand (27), a resident of Udhampur district. They had joined the police services in 2009.
THE GLOOMY PAST
The killings have come at a time when the graph of militant attacks on security forces had come down drastically in the past three years.
It was after eight months that cops had been targeted. In July 2012, militants had killed a cop in south Kashmir's Pulwama district.
Last week, militants had killed a sarpanch in north Kashmir.
Police sources said militant groups Hizbul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Taiba have sharpshooters in their ranks.
In 2009, the militant groups switched from fidayeen (suicide) attacks to sharpshooting in the valley. At least eight security forces' personnel were killed in such attacks in the same year.
Police sources said the militants used “buddy pair” or “small is smart technique” method in such attacks where number of militants in an offensive group was kept very low.