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2 LeT militants killed in Bijbehara encounter

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Anantnag/Srinagar, Feb 22: Two Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) militants were killed in a gunfight with security forces in Anantnag district on Friday night, police said.

The slain militants were identified as Naveed Ahmad Bhat alias Furqaan, a resident of Qaimoh in Kulgam, and Aqib Yaseen Bhat, a resident of Wanpora Qaimoh, also in Kulgam, Director General of Jammu and Kashmir Police Dilbag Singh told reporters in Srinagar.

Singh described the encounter, which took place at Naina Sangam area of Bijbehara, as another “successful anti-militancy operation” in the Valley.

The DGP said Naveed Ahmad Bhat had joined the LeT outfit in 2018 and was involved in a number of militancy incidents.

“Seven FIRs stand registered against him. He was involved in carrying out attacks on police and security forces camps, firing on civilians, threatening and intimidating people and shopkeepers and pasting posters post the abrogation of Article 370,” Singh said.

He said Aqib Yaseen Bhat was active since June 2019 and was also involved in a number of incidents.

The gunfight took place during the night and some arms and ammunition were recovered from the site of the encounter.

In a separate incident, the DGP said, police have arrested a self-styled commander of Hizbul Mujahideen outfit from Baramulla district in north Kashmir.

“Acting on specific information, Baramulla police arrested a Hizbul Mujahideen commander Junaid Farooaq Pandit, a resident of Pattan area. A pistol and 30 rounds have been recovered from him,” the top cop said.

Singh said Pandit was tasked to undertake selective killings like the recent incident at Narbal on the outskirts of the city here on February 05 when militants fired at a team of security personnel. Two militants and a CRPF personnel were killed in the incident.

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