Police in Srinagar arrested a top commander of Hizbul Mujahideen — Junaidul Islam — on Thursday. Junaid, who acted as spokesperson of the outfit, topped second in the Hizbul hierarchy after operational chief Moinul Islam in the Valley.
Police sources, while confirming the arrest of Hizb commander, said that Junaid was arrested from a hideout in Srinagar early on Thursday morning.
Known as Abdul Khaliq Dar, residents of Khanpora Baramullah, Junaid joined militant ranks in 1989 and crossed over to Pakistan for arms training. He spent two and a half years in Afghanistan fighting Russian forces along with Gulbadin Hikmatyar’s Hizb-e-Islami. Soon after, he returned to Kashmir in 1993 and has been active. He occupied various positions in the outfit and for the past two years, he was acting as spokesperson.
This is the third major jolt Hizb suffered in the past three days. Junaid’s arrest followed after the arrest of four top commanders of the outfit in north Kashmir on Wednesday. The arrested commanders included divisional commander for Kupwara and Baramullah districts Mushtaq Ahmad Malla, district commander for Kupwara Shabir Ganai, financial chief Nisar Malik and area commander Parvez Wani.
On Tuesday, Hizbul Mujahideen lost two of its senior-most Aslam Khan and Javaid Lone in a clash with police and army in south Kashmir’s Bijbehara quarter. Aslam was outfit’s divisional commander for Anantnaga and Pulwama districts. Javaid was the district commander for Anantnag.