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Two LeT militants including commander killed in encounter in Kashmir’s Pulwama

Waseem Shah was a militant on the most-wanted list of security forces in Kashmir and was suspected to be one of the architects of last year’s unrest in the Valley.

india Updated: Oct 14, 2017 12:20 IST
Toufiq Rashid
Toufiq Rashid
Hindustan Times, Srinagar
Jammu & Kashmir,Militancy,LeT
File photo of Army personnel during a gun battle with militants who attacked a police complex in which three security personnel were martyred in Pulwama of South Kashmir on October 2.(PT)

Two militants of the Lashkar-e-Toiba including a top commander were killed by security forces in an encounter in Litter in Pulwama in South Kashmir early Saturday.

“LeT district commander of Shopian, Waseem Shah was killed along with another LeT operative Nisar Ahmad,’’ an army spokesman confirmed.

Also known as Abu Osama Bhai, Shah hailed from Heff village in Shopian and was a category A++ militant who joined the LeT in March 2014. Ahmad a resident of Litter village had joined militants in May this year.

Sources said the encounter began after the militants who were holed up in a house opened fire on security forces after they had cordoned off the village.

“Shah was a dreaded militant involved in a number of attacks,’’ Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Range, Muneer Khan told HT.

Read more: Hizbul Mujahideen militant Gulzar Dar arrested in Srinaga

Shah was believed to be the main architect of unrest last year in south Kashmir and was wanted in various terror-related cases. Jammu and Kashmir police had been tracking his movements.

Shah, who carried a cash reward of Rs 10 lakh on his head, was recruiting fresh cadres for the militant outfit, police said.

A college dropout, Waseem Shah was also an all-rounder in cricket before becoming a militant. According to his father Ghulam Mohammad Shah, he was only 19 when his closest friend Setha Parrey became a militant and he soon followed in 2014.

In an interview to HT earlier this year Ghulam Mohammad Shah, a fruit merchant, had blamed constant questioning of his son by police about Parrey that led the youngster to join the militant ranks. Police records, however, showed that Shah was an over ground worker before joining militant ranks.

(With inputs from PTI)

First Published: Oct 14, 2017 09:30 IST