Srinagar (NVI): All three militants killed in an encounter at Batamaloo in Srinagar today were locals from South Kashmir, Director General of Police (DGP) J&K, Dilbagh Singh said here during a press conference.
“The militants were given a chance to surrender but they refused and fired. One CRPF officer and another CRPF man sustained injuries in the initial exchange of firing. The officer is critical and we are praying for his recovery,” the DGP said.
He said that the forces conducted the operation in a professional manner and killed all three militants. “However, a woman was caught in the cross-firing. Her killing is very unfortunate and we express sympathy with the bereaved family,” DGP Singh said. He was flanked by IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar and the new IG CRPF, Srinagar sector, Charu Sinha. The slain woman was identified as Kousar Jan.
About the identification of the three slain militants, the DGP said that all three were local militants from South Kashmir. “Arms and ammunition were recovered from them,” he added.
He said that militants from other districts of South and North Kashmir keep on visiting Srinagar to carry out attacks on security forces. “On August 14, they targeted our party and killed two policemen at Nowgam. Before that, they had killed two BSF men at Pandach on city outskirts. And then they made another attempt at Pantha Chowk where we lost a brave SoG man,” the DGP Singh said.
He said police and CRPF teams are alert and whenever they get a lead about presence of militants in Srinagar, efforts are always put in to ensure zero collateral damage. “Today’s operation was seventh one in Srinagar in the recent past, but biggest success was the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Junaid Sehrai,” the J&K Police chief said.
He said that this year so far 177 militants have been killed in 72 operations which include 22 foreign terrorists as well. He said that Pakistan is trying to float new outfits to create confusion while efforts are being made to revive Al-Badr. “We are aware of this and counter programs and strategies are being adopted,” the DGP said, adding that despite huge efforts by militants and their handlers across, 20 youth who had tread the wrong path, returned back.
Also speaking on the occasion, IG Charu Sinha said that there is a huge difference between the situation in Naxal areas and Kashmir, especially Srinagar. “We will work professionally in collaboration with police and other agencies,” said Sinha, who has served in Andhra Pradesh and other Naxal hit areas in India.