A militant commander of Hizbul Mujahideen (HM) was killed on Tuesday in an encounter in north-eastern district of Ganderbal in Kashmir, which is witnessing heightened militant activities again. The death toll of militants in past 10 days has touched seven.
The encounter sparked immediately after a joint party of the Ganderbal police and the army’s 24 RR launched an operation in Hayan, Palpora and Ganderbal villages, this morning.
“The firing started around 8am. One militant was killed in the encounter and there was no major damage to any property,” Ganderbal SP, Shahid Mehraj told Hindustan Times.
The Ganderbal encounter assumes significance as it falls in the constituency of chief minister Omar Abdullah. The district continues to have two more well-known militants hiding and planning subversive activities, according to police sources.
The militant, who was holed up inside the house of Muhammad Yousf Khatana, engaged the security personnel, encircling the house, for a couple of hours.
The slain militant, a local, has been identified as Ghulam Nabi War, a resident of Hyan, Palpora, of the HM.
“The terrorist was active since 2003 and was a district commander of Hizb in the area. He used to operate in concert with Mushtaq Killer, who was gunned down last year,” said Srinagar-based Defence spokesperson Lt Col JS Brar.
Security forces recovered A-K 47 rifles, 118 rounds of AK ammunition, 10 UBGL grenades, one UBGL, and one Chinese grenade from the encounter site.
Six militants and one army personnel have been killed in three major encounters since first week of July in north and south Kashmir.
While urban pockets are peaceful, the hinterland of Kashmir is witnessing heightened militant activity. Twenty eight militants have been killed since January this year.
“There are inputs of large concentration of terrorists in launch pads across the line of control which indicates likelihood of increased attempts at infiltration in the future,” said Chinar Corps General-officer-Command Lieutenant General Om, last Sunday.