Jaish chief Masood Azhar’s nephew among two killed in Kashmir gunfight: Police
The nephew of Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar was among two militants killed in an encounter in Tral area of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district, police said.
The Pakistan-based terror group also told a local news agency that one of the two is Azhar’s nephew, Usman Hyder.
An officer later confirmed that the sniper killed in the gunfight is Hyder. Hyder was wanted for some recent attacks on security forces in the Tral area where Tuesday’s encounter took place.
A M-4 Carbine, used for carrying out sniper attacks on security forces, was also seized from the encounter site, officials said.
The encounter comes against the backdrop of reports that Jaish had started using snipers to attack security personnel. Over the last one month, three security personnel have been killed in sniper fire in Kashmir.
The army’s Rashtriya Rifles and Special Operations Group of the police had launched a joint operation at Chantikar village in Tral after a tip-off about the presence of militants on Tuesday morning,
“During the search operation, the militants fired on the search party which retaliated leading to an encounter. In the ensuing encounter so far, two bodies of the terrorists have been recovered. They are affiliated with the proscribed terror outfit, Jaish-e-Mohammad,” the police spokesman said.
“Searches are still going on in the area,” he said. Police have also requested local villagers not to venture inside the encounter zone since such an area can prove dangerous due to stray explosive materials.
As the operation was underway, people assembled near the encounter site and pelted stones on the security forces in a bid to provide an escape route to the militants. Officials said three militants were believed to be holed up in a house.
Locals also alleged the police and army used explosives to bring down the house.
(With PTI inputs)