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Oldest serving militant among two killed in Anantnag encounter

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“Militants offer gun salute to slain commander”

YE KIS KA LAHO HAI KOUN MARA: (L to R) – Wailing relatives of HM militant Omar, who was killed in an encounter with security forces near Anantnag and wailing relatives of Constable Iqbal of Rohama, who was killed in a militant attack near Shopian. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Anantnag: Two Hizbul Mujahideen militants including its commander Altaf Ahmed Dar alias Altaf Kachroo, one of the oldest surviving militant, were killed today in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district, police said.

Giving details, a spokesman of the police said that based on a specific intelligence, Jammu and Kashmir police along with other security forces launched the search operation at Muniward village of Khanabal area in the district at the crack of the dawn.

“During the searches, militants fired on the search party, which was retaliated leading to an encounter and in the ensuing encounter two militants were eliminated. The killed militants were identified as Altaf Ahmad Dar alias Ataf Kachroo alias Moin of Hawoora Mishipora and Omar Rashid Wani of Khudwani Kulgam,” the spokesman said.

He said Dar, who also hails from Kulgam in South Kashmir, was currently operating as a one of the most important militant Commander of Hizbul Mujahideen and had a long history of criminal records since 2007.

“It was a specific operation carried out swiftly by the security forces. In the action both militants, who were involved in several cases of civilian atrocities and attacks on policemen, were eliminated,” Inspector General of Police (Kashmir Range) Swayam Prakash Pani said here.

Considered as a long time surviving militant in the area, Dar was involved in series of crimes in the area which included attacks on the security forces and killings of civilians and policemen in South Kashmir, said a statement issued by police.

The police spokesman also said that Dar along with his associate Yasin Itoo played a major role in instigating people during 2016 unrest which was sparked after the death of Hizbul Mujahideen’s Burhan Wani.

The other militant killed in the encounter was Omar Rashid Wani, who had become active since last year.

The spokesman said he was involved in many civilian atrocities and attacks on security establishments.

Wani was also involved in killing of policemen at Anantnag and recently he carried an attack on CRPF in Srinagar and managed to give a slip during the recent Batmaloo encounter site.

The spokesman said though the two were part of the Hizbul Mujahideen group, they managed to keep close coordination with other outfits.

Aqib Naik reports from Kulgam: Thousands of people on Wednesday thronged Hawura village of Kulgam district to participate in the funeral procession of top Hizbul Mujahideen commander Altaf Kachroo.

Kachroo was killed in a gunfight at Anantnag district along with his associate Umar from Khudwani village of Kulgam district on Wednesday. He was active in militancy from last 15 years.

Reports said, at around 1pm slain Kachroo’s body reached his native village as thousands of people from nearby areas assembled in the local school ground to take part in his last rites.

According to eyewitnesses, dozens of militants also showed up in the funeral procession of slain militant commander and offered gun salute to him.

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