Four militants killed as gunfight breaks out in Anantnag

Gunfight in Kashmir
Representational Image

SRINAGAR — Government forces shot dead four militants inside a hideout in Watergam area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district.

Acting on a specific input, Jammu and Kashmir Police, Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and the Army cordoned off the area in the night. As the government forces zeroed in on the house, where the militants were present, the militants opened fire, triggering the encounter.

Militants were hiding in a washroom of the house owned by one Fayaz Ahmed and they didn’t get opportunity to settle themselves. All the four militants died inside the narrow hideout.

The photographs that are viral show government forces dragging slain militants with the help of ropes out from the narrow hideout.

Police sources said that input about the hideout and the presence of militants was received from the area, but it took almost whole night to locate the actual house and for that purpose, the area was brought under cordon and thorough searches of the residential houses were carried out.

Forces used explosives to destroy the hideout and recovered the bodies of four militants and some arms and ammunition. Three militants belonged to Lashkar-e-Taiba and one was associated with Jaish-e-Muhammad.

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Police sources identified the slain militants as Umar Amin Bhat son of Muhammad Amin Bhat, a resident of Sopat Tengapora Kulgam, Muzaffar Ahmed Bhat alias Abu Talha son of Muhammad Amin Bhat of Sopat Tengapora Kulgam, Gulzar Ahmed Bhat son of Muhammad Salam Bhat of Tarigam Kulgam and Sajad Ahmed Bhat son of Muhammad Ahsan Bhat of Sherpora Frisal Kulgam.

Umar Amin, 22-years-old slain militant was having a B.Tech degree from Jalahandar Punjab. He had joined LeT ranks in April 2019. His relative said that after finishing his B.Tech, Umar arrived in Kashmir but joined militant ranks and never visited his home. “Umar and Muzaffar are from the same village and were neighbours. Muzaffar had joined LeT in December 2017 and was a close associate of Lashkar Commander Naveed Jatt. Before joining militancy, he owned a bakery shop.”

Another slain militant Gulzar Ahmed Bhat was 22 years school-dropout who had joined JeM in October 2018. Sajad Ahmed Bhat (27) was a wood-cutter before joining militancy in April 2019.

A Police spokesman issued a press release informing that during the search operation, the hiding militants fired upon the joint search party. The fire was retaliated, leading to an encounter. In the encounter, four militants were killed.

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The killed militants have been identified as Muzaffar Ahmed Bhat (district commander of proscribed militant outfit LeT) son of Mohammad Amin Bhat; Omar Ameen Bhat (affiliated with proscribed militant outfit LeT) son of Muhammad Ameen Bhat, both residents of Sopat Tangpora, Kulgam; Sajad Ahmed Bhat (affiliated with proscribed militant outfit LeT) son of Muhammad Subhan resident of Tengbal Frisal and Gulzar Ahmed Bhat (affiliated with proscribed militant outfit HM) son of Abdul Salam Bhat, resident of Hirpora Tarigam, Kulgam.

Two AK 47 rifles, two pistols, ammunition and other incriminating materials have been recovered from the site of encounter.

As per police records, Muzzafar had a history of militant crime cases since 2017. He was involved in seven different cases U/S 7/25 Arms Act, 302 IPC, 18, 19, 20, 39 ULAP Act. Gulzar Ahmad Bhat was involved in a case U/S 13, 18, 38, 39 ULAP Act of PS Kulgam. Sajad Ahmad was also involved in a case U/S 13, 20 ULAP Act. Similarly, Omar was involved in three FIRs U/S 13,16, 18, 20, 39 ULAP Act.

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