94 Militants Killed This Year So Far, 24 Of Them In Last 2 Weeks Alone: IGP
Srinagar, June 16: A top commander of Hizb-ul-Muajhideen along with his two colleagues, one of them nephew of a former PDP MLC, were killed in a gunfight in Turkwangam area of South Kashmir’s Shopian district on Tuesday.Sources told GNS that a joint team of Police, Army’s 44RR and CRPF launched a cordon-and-search-operation in Turkwangam early morning.
As the joint team approached the suspected spot, the hiding militants fired upon them. The fire was retaliated by the team, triggering off an encounter in which three militants were killed. Addressing a joint press conference, Inspector General of Police Kashmir Vijay Kumar said that the “joint operation was carried out in a professional manner with no collateral damage.”
“During the current year, 94 (militants) including top commanders have been killed so far,” he said, adding, “Pertinently 24 (militants) were killed in the past two weeks mostly in District Shopian.”
A defence ministry spokesman in a statement to GNS said slain militants were involved in the recent killing of a civilian, Tariq Ahmad Paul, “who was abducted and brutally killed by them last week.” Paul’s house was damaged during a gunfight leading to the killing of four militants’ at Pinjoora, two days before his body was found in Turkwangam.
While police said that the identity of the slain militants was yet to be ascertained, official sources identified the slain as Hizb-ul-Mujahideen district Commander Zubair Wani of Turkawangam, Kamran Manhas, nephew of former PDP MLC Zaffar Iqbal Manhas, a resident of Sharaab Kareena and Muneeb-ul-Haq of Sugan Zainapora Shopian.
Kamran Manhas had announced joining the Hizb ranks in January 2019 and a picture showing him holding an AK-47 rifle went viral on social media then. Reacting to it then, Zaffar Manhas said he was in “absolute disbelief” and that he and his family could never imagine such a thing even in dreams. Since then Zaffar Manhas left PDP and joined Jammu and Kashmir Apni party.
Kamran was the first youth from the Sharaab village to join militancy in more than twenty years. It could not be ascertained immediately if any other youth has joined the militant ranks since then.
The slain trio has been buried in Sheeri Baramulla. Meanwhile, internet services have been suspended in Shopian district to prevent protests, sources added. (GNS)