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Militant killed, policeman injured in grenade attack in Kashmir’s Tral

The attack comes a day after two policemen were killed by militants in two separate attacks.

india Updated: Feb 26, 2018 18:46 IST
Abhishek Saha
Abhishek Saha
Hindustan Times, Srinagar
Militants,Grenade Attack,Kashmir
Militants lobbed a grenade at a police station in Tral of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district.(PTI File Photo)

A militant was killed in a grenade blast as his attempt to escape police custody was foiled on Monday at police station in Tral area of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district, officials said, adding that a policeman was also injured.

“A terrorist Mushtaq Chopan died in grenade explosion when challenged by sentry while trying to escape from police station Tral,” director general of state police SP Vaid wrote on Twitter.

The attack comes a day after two policemen were killed by militants in two separate attacks -- one, a selection grade constable guarding the famous Chrar-e-Sharif shrine in Budgam district and the second, a constable posted as a guard outside the residence of separatist leader Fazal Haq Qureshi.

According to district police officials, Chopan -- wearing a burkha – was coming out of the police station while a suspected accomplice allegedly lobbed a grenade at the station to distract the police. But the plan went awry and Chopan himself was killed in the blast.

A police spokesperson said, “Today at 12:30pm one Hizbul Mujahideen militant namely Mushtaq Chopan who was in custody of PS Tral tried to escape from the police station wearing a burka. When he was near the main gate someone from outside lobbed a grenade as a part of the planned conspiracy to divert the attention so that he could escape conveniently.”

A police officer, requesting anonymity, said that how Chopan managed to procure the burkha needs to be investigated and it needs to be probed whether the women who visited him in the lock-up somehow passed it on to him.

The injured constable has been identified as Mehraj Din and has been shifted to the army hospital.

“Magisterial enquiry has been initiated,” the police spokesperson said, adding the “circumstances under which he was escaping are being looked into”. Chopan and another militant Shuja-u-din Sheikh, along with nine overground workers for militant outfits, were arrested in north Kashmir’s Sopore in January.

Police said Chopan was currently on “custody change” process as he was wanted by Awantipora police (under which the Tral police station comes).

After the killing of the second policeman on Sunday night, DGP Vaid tweeted: “”We have lost another precious life when Constable Farooq Ahmad was martyred today in Srinagar. Be more careful boys, it’s the proxy war that we are fighting in Jammu & Kashmir.”

First Published: Feb 26, 2018 14:03 IST