Lashkar militant killed in Shopian gunfight: Police

‘Militants attack joint security forces party in Sopore from a house, escape; Massive search underway in the area: Police spokesman

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Government forces during a search operation in Kashmir
Government forces during a search operation in Kashmir (Photo Credit: Reshi Irshad)

SRINAGAR — A local militant has been killed in an encounter between government forces and militants in orchards of Ganowpora Arshipora area of south Kashmir’s Shopian district on Friday while as militants fired at a joint team of security forces in Warpora area of Sopore in north Kashmir’s Baramulla after which they escaped from the house, forcing the security forces to launch searches in the area, police said.

A senior police official said that a joint team of Police, Army’s 44 RR and CRPF launched a Cordon and Search Operation (CASO) on specific information about the presence of militants in the area.

He said that as the joint team of forces approached towards the suspected spot, the hiding militants fired upon them, which was retaliated, triggering an encounter.

During exchange of fire, one local militant was killed, he said, while identifying him as Aetimad Ahmad from Ayend, Shopian.

He said that one AK-47 besides other ammunition was recovered from the possession of slain militant. The official said that the encounter was over and search operation was on.

A police spokesman in a statement said that acting on a specific input regarding presence of militants in orchards of village Ganowpora area of Shopian, a joint cordon and search operation was launched by Police, 44RR and 14Bn CRPF in the area.

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“During the search operation, as the presence of militants got ascertained, they were given repeated opportunities to surrender, however they fired indiscriminately upon the joint search party which was retaliated leading to an encounter,” he said.

He added, “In the ensuing encounter, one militant was killed and his body was retrieved from the site of encounter. He has been identified as Aitmad Ahmad Dar, resident of Awend Shopian linked with LeT. As per police records, the slain militant was active since 26/03/2021 and was involved in several cases.”

The spokesman said that arms and ammunition including one AK-56 rifle & other incriminating materials were recovered from encounter site. “All the recovered materials have been taken into case records for further investigation and to probe his complicity in other terror crimes. In this connection, Police have registered a case under relevant sections of law and investigation has been initiated. People are requested to cooperate with police till the area is completely sanitized and cleared off of all the explosive materials,” the statement said.

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Pertinently, 47 militants have been killed in J&K so far this year and most of them belong to Shopian district.

Meanwhile, as a precautionary measure, internet services have been snapped in Shopian district.

Second encounter started at Warpora area of Sopore in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district after militants attacked the joint party of security forces. Police said that militants managed to escape to the nearby fields after which massive search operation was on in the area.

“Areas nearby Warpora have also been cordoned by the joint forces comprising of Army, SOG wing of JK Police and CRPF,” he said.

Kashmir Zone Police earlier in a tweet said that encounter has started at Warpora area of Sopore. “Police and security forces are on the job. Further details shall follow,” it said.

A police spokesman, however, said that in the evening at about 7:30 PM, a joint party of Police and security forces at Usmanabad, Warpora area of Sopore while laying cordon of a suspected house, militants fired upon the party and escaped from the house during brief exchange of fire.

“Reinforcements came and nearby orchard was cordoned and search is going on,” the spokesman said.

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