Two militants, including a suspected top commander of banned outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed, were killed in an encounter in Srinagar’s Saria Bala area late on Monday night.
Police have yet ascertain the identity of the two killed, but sources said Jaish Saifullah, a top commander of the outfit, might be among them. Both militants are believed to be non-locals.
The suspected militants were gunned down in a brief exchange of fire with security forces in Maharaja Bazaar following information about their presence in the area, said a police official. Sarai Bala is less than a kilometre from Srinagar’s commercial centre, Lal Chowk.
The duo allegedly had rented a room in the area claiming to be from Kupwara and students of a local college.
“We had asked for papers and they had promised to give us proper identity proof and other papers in a few days,” said a member of the family that owned the house.
The encounter took place on the day three police officers were killed in two separate militant attacks in Srinagar. The militants, believed to be from Hizbul Mujahideen, were still at large on Monday night.
In the first incident, two officers were shot from close range at Mill Stop in Zadibal area, which connects the city to the Hazratbal Shrine and a hospital in Soura, a police official said. The deceased were identified as assistant sub-inspector Ghulam Mohammad and head constable Nazir Ahmad.
The second attack that claimed the life of police officer Mohammad Shafi took place a few hours later in Tengpora area on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway. The militants allegedly made away with the officer’s rifle.
It is yet to be ascertained if the slain militants were involved the two attacks, said a police spokesperson.
(With agency inputs)