Mir Zeeshan

Militant killed in Pulwama encounter

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Pulwama, Dec 28: A militant was killed in an encounter with government forces at Karewa Banderpora of south Kashmir's Pulwama district on Friday morning.

Government forces launched a cordon and search operation in the Banderpora-Rinzipora area of Pulwama on Friday morning following information about the presence of militants there, a police spokesman said.

He said the search operation turned into an encounter after the militants fired on the search party of the forces, who retaliated. In the ensuing gunfight, one militant was killed, the spokesman said.

The slain militant was identified as Ishfaq Yousuf Wani, son of late Mohammad Yousuf Wani, resident of Koil village of the Pulwama district.

After legal formalities, the body of the slain militant was handed to his family for last rites, the spokesman said.

Thousands of people turned up for his funeral in the Koil village after Friday congregational prayers. Multiple rounds of funeral prayers were held as the slain militant was laid to rest in his ancestral graveyard next to his father's grave amid pro-freedom and pro-militant slogans.

According to local residents of Koil, it is the 14th militant of the village they buried today.

"Slain Ishfaq was the son of ex-Hizb militant, Mohammad Yousuf Wani, who was also killed in an encounter at Pinglena village of the district on 31 August, 1996," said a relative.

“He never talked of Kashmir situation or about the death of our father with us but used to remain busy with his studies and later on with his bank job. He left home this July without saying a word,” his elder brother revealed. .

Wani according to police information had joined Lashkar-e-Toiba militant group on 20 July, 2018.

Earlier he had completed his MBA (Masters in Business Administration) from Lovely Professional University in 2016. After completing his degree, he worked for nearly six to seven months as a manager with ICICI Bank before joining LeT militant group.

Ishfaq is survived by two elder brothers and two younger brothers – one of them working as cop and other in Air Force at Awantipora base.

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