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Drones look for hideouts as Jammu and Kashmir’s Anantnag operation enters Day 6

ByMir Ehsan, Srinagar
Sep 19, 2023 03:22 AM IST

Security forces are using drones and helicopters for surveillance of the dense forest area in Jammu and Kashmir’s Anantnag where terrorists are believed to be holed up

The operation in the dense forests of Garol, Kokernag, in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district entered its sixth day, with the searches for terrorists responsible for killing of three officers and a soldier being intensified.

Security personnel on their way to the encounter site in Garol, Kokernag, in Anantnag district. (Waseem Andrabi /HT)

Throughout the day, the intermittent firing and occasional blasts continued as forces continued as forces targeted terrorists’ possible “hiding spots” in the forests. Tight cordon has been maintained around the forests of Garol from all the sides.

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Security forces are using drones and helicopters for surveillance of the dense forest area with several cave-like hideouts where terrorists are believed to be holed up since Wednesday

A senior officer said that operation will continue till the terrorists responsible for the killing soldiers are tracked down.

“This is a very different operation and it’s taking the troops on ground time to avoid any further casualties,” the officer said, adding that the exhausted soldiers are being replaced by the fresh parties.

According to the available information, officers leading the operation are sure that terrorists responsible for the attack on the officers and the assault party on Wednesday are still hiding in the forest area.

The security forces lost four personnel — Colonel Manpreet Singh, the commanding officer of 19 Rashtriya Rifles, Major Aashish Dhonchak, also from the same battalion, deputy superintendent of police Humayun Muzamil Bhat and a radio operator on Wednesday.

Lieutenant governor (L-G) Manoj Sinha on Monday morning visited Bhat’s family members at their residence in Humhama, Budgam.

Sinha expressed his condolences to the family members of the officer and assured them all assistance and support from the UT administration, adding, “The entire nation stands in solidarity with the family of our braveheart.”

Addressing a function in Srinagar on Sunday, Sinha said every drop of the martyrs’ blood will be avenged and the terrorist handlers will have to pay a heavy price. “We have complete faith in our soldiers... The entire nation stands in solidarity with the jawans,” he said.

He claimed that the attack on security forces in Anantnag was the result of frustration among terrorist ranks due to the successful conduct of the G20 Summit and the crackdown on conflict profiteers in Jammu and Kashmir.

The L-G said the time had come to end terrorism and the ecosystem that has suppressed the common man in Jammu and Kashmir.

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