Srinagar: Security forces today achieved a huge success in Kashmir as they eliminated 3 terrorists, including a top commander of Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terror outfit, in a gunfight which is still going on with at least 2 more trapped terrorists.
The encounter in Malwah village of Baramulla district in North Kashmir also left 4 Army men, including an officer, and a Policeman wounded.
The LeT commander Yousuf Kantroo, who along with 2 associates was killed in the marathon encounter, was amongst the list of top 10 most wanted militants, the police said.
He was involved in a series of killings including that of a Block Development Council Chairman, a Kashmiri soldier, a Special Police Officer and his brother in Budgam district, police said.
The encounter ensued a search operation launched by police and Army following specific information generated by Budgam police.
When the joint search party reached the spot where the terrorists were hiding, it came under fire in which 4 soldiers, including an officer, received minor injuries.
The firing was strongly retaliated to by the forces.
Kantroo was one of longest surviving terrorists , IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar said
Later in the night, police said another terrorist was killed.
The IGP said elimination of Kantrro is “a big success as he was involved in several killings including very recent killing of police personnel & his brother, one civilian and one soldier in Budgam.
Police tonight said two more terrorists are still inside the cordon and exchange of fire is going on.
Kantroo was the longest surviving militant in Kashmir.
He had joined as an Overground Worker of Pakistan-supported Hizbul Mujahideen terror outfit and was arrested in the year 2005.
Later, he was released in the year 2008 but he again joined ranks in the year 2017.
“Soon he started killing innocent civilians, policemen and political workers,” Police spokesman said, adding he later switched to LeT.
During the operation repeated efforts were made by security forces to ensure surrender of other holed up militants.
Even the mother of one of the trapped terrorists was seen in videos making appeal to her son to surrender but to no avail.
She said the terrorists are misguiding youth to lure them into terrorism.