Mir Zeeshan

Four militants killed in Pulwama encounter

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3 army soldiers and cop injured

Pulwama, Apr 01: Four militants belonging to a combined group of Lashkar-e-Taiba and Hizbul Mujahideen outfits, were killed, while three army soldiers and a policeman injured in an encounter in south Kashmir's Pulwama district Monday, police said.

Acting on an input about the presence of militants in Lassipora area of Pulwama district, troops of 44RR, CRPF’s 182 bn and 183 bn, police launched a cordon and search operation there this morning, a police spokesperson said.

He said during the searches, the militants fired upon the search party, who retaliated and in the ensuing encounter, four militants were killed. Their bodies have been retrieved from the site of the encounter, the spokesperson said.

He said in the initial exchange of firing, three army soldiers and one policeman sustained injuries.

The injured were hospitalised and are stated to be stable, he added.

The spokesperson said it was a “clean operation and no collateral damage took place” during the encounter.

He identified the slain militants as Zaffar Paul, son of Mohammad Ahsan, resident of Dangerpora Shopian; Tauseef Ahmad Yattoo, son of Abdul Aziz, resident of Gudbug Pulwama; Aqib Ahmad Kumar, son of Bashir Ahmad, resident of Hellow Shopian, and Mohammad Shafi Bhat, son of Ghulam Mohammad, resident Sedow Shopian.

According to the police records, it was a combined group of proscribed outfits HM and LeT. They were wanted by law for their complicity in a series of militancy incidents including attack on ecurity establishments and civilian atrocities, the spokesperson said.

He said Yattoo had a long history of being involved in militancy and several cases were registered against him.

"Yattoo was involved in conspiring and executing many attacks in the area," he said.

The spokesperson said Paul was also involved in many militancy incidents and cases which were registered against him in the Shopian police station. Kumar and Bhat were also involved in militancy in the area," he said.

Incriminating material, including arms and ammunition, was recovered from the site of the encounter, the spokesperson said, adding that all the material have been taken in the case records for further investigation.

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