Kashmir: Top Pakistani commander among 2 terrorists killed in encounter, hunt on for more

at 8:02 pm
Security personnel after an encounter in Kashmir (File pic)

Srinagar: In a major success, security forces tracked down and killed two terrorists, including a top Pakistani commander, in Sopore district of north Kashmir in an overnight encounter which also left one civilian injured.

Meanwhile, a hunt continues for a group of terrorists with whom security forces two days back had a brief exchange of fire in which two soldiers were injured in Bandipora district of north Kashmir.

The encounter in Sopore started last evening after the security forces, on the basis of a specific input about presence of terrorists, launched a cordon-and-search operation (CASO) in Check Mohalla Nowpora area.

The operation was jointly launched by Jammu and Kashmir Police, Army and CRPF to track down the terrorists and arrest them.

However, during the search operation, the hiding terrorists fired at the team of security forces, IGP Kashmir V.K. Birdi told reporters.

The security forces retaliated to the firing, triggering an encounter, he said.

The exchange of fire continued through the night and the two terrorists were killed this morning, Birdi said.

One of the slain terrorists was identified as Saifullah alias Abu Maaz alias Faraz, a Pakistani national and top commander of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM).

The slain terrorist was present in north Kashmir since a last few years and his killing is a major setback to Pakistan-backed terrorism in the Valley.

Over the last two days, this was the second encounter between security forces and terrorists in Kashmir, particularly northern part of the Valley.

Two days back, there was a brief exchange of fire between security forces and a group of terrorists in Bandipora district in which 2 soldiers were injured.

After the brief “contact” between the two sides, the terrorists fled and hid somewhere, possibly in a nearby forest area.

A combing operation is since underway, with the security forces even using drones and helicopters in an effort to track down the terrorists.