SRINAGAR — Three JeM militants were killed and an Army soldier was injured in a gunfight between militants and government forces at Astan Mohalla in Kangan area of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Wednesday.

Inspector General of Police (Kashmir Range), Vijay Kumar today said that an IED expert of Jaish-e-Muhammad outfit, who had participated in Afghan war, and was the mastermind of car bomb that was detected and destroyed by the government forces in Pulwama on May 28, was among the slain militants in Pulwama. He termed the killing of Jaish’s top commander as a “big success” for the forces in Kashmir.

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“The slain commander has been identified as Abdur Rehman alias Fouji Bhai or Fouji Baba, who had participated in Afghan war and was active since 2017 in Kashmir. He was an IED expert and was the mastermind of May 28 car bomb plan which was averted on time by the Police, Army and CRPF,” Kumar said. He said the slain militant commander belonged to Multan, Pakistan.

He said that the identity of two other slain militants is being ascertained and it seems that both are locals. “We have called some people to identify the slain and if they turn out to be locals, their parents will be allowed to participate in the burial at Baramulla district of north Kashmir,” he said.

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The IGP, who was flanked by Army and CRPF officers, said that it was for the first time that top militant commanders of Hizb, Lashkar and Jaish were killed. “The number of militants killed this year is 75 and majority of them were commanders.”

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