Mir Zeeshan

Six associates of Zakir Musa killed in Tral encounter

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Dadsara village mourns killing of four militants

Pulwama, Dec 22: Six militants of Ansar Gazwat-ul-Hind including outfit's deputy chief and a close associate of Zakir Musa were killed on Saturday morning in a gunfight with government forces at Arampora village of Tral, which falls under police district lines Awantipora in Southern Kashmir.

A police spokesperson said that in a joint operation, government forces cordoned off Arampora area of Awantipora after receiving credible inputs about the presence of some militants there.

He said that as searches in the area were initiated, a search party came under militant fire.

"The fire was retaliated triggering a gunfight in which six militants were killed. The bodies of the killed militants were retrieved from the site of gunfight" he said.

The slain militants were identified as Soleha Muhammad Akhoon alias Rehan Khan son of Ghulam Mohammad Akhoon of Arampora village, Rasik Qadir Mir son of Ghulam Qadir Mir, Rouf Ahmad Mir son of Gh Nahi Mir, Umer Ramzan Mir son of Mohd Ramzan Mir and Nadeem Ahmad Sofi son of Mohammad Muzaffar Sofi, all residents of Dadsara village of Tral and Faisal Javid Khanday son of Javid Ahmad Khanday resident of Amlar village Tral. All the slain militants belonged to Zakir Musa led ANSAR GHAZWUT-UL-HIND.

Local residents informed that forces cordoned off an apple orchard in Arampora along Awantipora-Khodpora road and fired many shots towards the spot. The said "militants were sheltering in a hideout which was dug at the base of  around 12 feet deep ravine.

After performing legal-medical formalities the bodies were handed to heirs for the burial. Thousands of people turned up in the funeral of slain militants in their respective villages. After multiple funerals the salin militants were laid to rest amidst pro-freedom and pro-Zakir Musa slogans.

One among the six slain militants, Soleha Mohammad Akhoon alias Rehaan Khan was said to be Deputy Chief of Ansar Gazwat-ul-Hind, who had joined Militant ranks on 17 March 2015. A relative said he was recruited by Zakir Musa and was his close associate and when Zakir parted ways with HM to float his own AGH, he was the first to join him and became his Deputy Chief.

He had dropped from school at 12th standard after appearing in examination for a single paper only.

Son of a revenue department employee Soleha is survived by two younger siblings including brother and sister.

Faisal Khanday had joined Ansar Gazwat-ul-Hind militant group before seven months according to his uncle.

He said that Faisal was injured in Saimoo village of Tral during clashes which erupted in the village after the killing of the HM commder Sabzar Ahmad Bhat and recovered to his abdominal bullet injury after five months.

He had a diploma in civil engineering from Government polytechnic college Kulgam and is survived by two siblings besides parents.

Meanwhile, police said that all the six militants were wanted by the law for their complicity in a series of crimes including attack on security establishments and civilian atrocities.

“Rasiq had a long history of terror crime records since last five years. Several terror cases were registered against him including case FIR number 170/2016 under section 13, 18, 18E, 20 ULAP Act,” police said.

Soliha according to police records was involved in several militancy related attacks on security establishments and many other civilian atrocities in the area.

“Similarly Nadeem, Umar, Rouf and Faisal were also involved in several terror crimes,” police said.

Citizens are once again requested not to venture inside the encounter zone since such an area can prove dangerous due to stray explosive materials. People are requested to cooperate with police till the area is completely sanitized and cleared of all the explosives materials, police said.

Meanwhile, on Saturday afternoon, sea of people turned to Dadsara village of Tral in South Kashmir after learning that four among the six killed militants belonged to the village. Soon the mourning started in Mir Mohalla locality of Dadsara, where four neighbouring families lost their sons.

Two among the four slain militants,  Umer Ramzan Mir and Rouf Ahmad Mir had joined militant ranks on same date, 7 November 2018 and were killed together on same day and later buried in same graveyard side by side.

Within a short period of time multiple funerals were offered to all four slain militants who were later buried in martyr’s graveyard.

Rouf belongs to a poor family and his father is Kangri (firepot) weaver. He is survived by an elder brother besides parents.

Umer is survived by two younger brothers besides parents. He had schooling upto 10th standard.

Nadeem Ahmad Sofi was raised by his maternal grandparents and had lost his mother, (divorcee) years ago. Local residents said that he joined militancy on 22 April in 2018.

Rasik Ahmad Mir son of Gh Qadir Mir had joined militant ranks on 25 August, 2016 after facing frequent detentions on charges of stone pelting, locals said. He was a graduate and category A militant.

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