Srinagar: Four militants were killed in a gun battle in south Kashmir ‘s Pinjora village after security forces launched an operation in the area on Monday.
This was the second such operation against militants in Shopian district since Sunday. Earlier, police killed five militants at Reban village, around 12 km from the site of Monday’s gun battle.
The four militants, believed to be locals affiliated with Hizbul Mujahideen, were killed inside a house that was damaged during the clash.
Inspector general of police Vijay Kumar confirmed nine terrorists of Hizbul Mujahideen were killed by security forces in the two gun battles in Shopian since Sunday.
“Four militants were killed in today’s (Monday’s) encounter, which took place at Pinjora, and the operation ended in the afternoon,” he said. Kumar described both operations as “clean” and said there was no collateral damage.
Though police haven’t identified the militants killed in the two operations, local residents said they belonged to Shopian and Pulwama and some of them had recently joined militancy.
Director general of police Dilbag Singh said 22 terrorists, including six commanders, had been killed in nine different operations across Jammu and Kashmir in the past fortnight.
He told a media briefing the intensity of operations against militants has gone up in the past two weeks.
“Among the dead militants were six top commanders, who were involved in attacks and killings of innocent civilians, police and security forces. They all had a long list of crimes. They also killed an SPO, a young girl named Khushboo, in south Kashmir,” he said.
He said of the 22 dead militants, 18 were from Pulwama, Kulgam and Shopian districts in south Kashmir. “The killing of 18 terrorist from the area is a big relief for people of that area,” he said.
In Jammu region, three terrorists were killed in Rajouri and Poonch while trying to infiltrate into the area. “Another terrorist who infiltrated was killed in Kalakote sector. This shows Pakistan and its agencies are trying to infiltrate terrorists from all sides, from Rajouri, Poonch, Kashmir and the international border,” Singh said.
He added an attack involving an improvised explosive device (IED) was foiled while militants were trying to use the bomb on a highway. “Abdul Rehman alias Fauji Bhai, who was affiliated with Hizbul Mujahideen and developed this IED, was killed,” he said.
Singh said the banned Jaish-e-Mohammed is still trying to make IEDs for attacks.
“This year, 88 terrorists have been killed in around 36 operations,” Singh said, adding security forces were “neutralising” terrorists who infiltrated into the region in the hinterland.