J&K Police releases list of 10 most wanted militants

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The list was released by IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar.

J&K POLICE has released a list of 10 most wanted militants – seven old militant commanders and three new recruits. The list was released by IGP Kashmir Vijay Kumar.

“Top 10 targets: Old terrorists – Salim Parray, Yousuf Kantroo, Abbas Sheikh, Reyaz Shetergund, Farooq Nali, Zubair Wani & Ashraf Molvi. New terrorists – Saqib Manzoor, Umer Mustaq Khandey & Wakeel Shah: IGP Kashmir,” the police tweeted Monday night.

Among those named, Mohammad Abbas Sheikh is a top militant commander from south Kashmir’s Kulgam district. A resident of Rampur village, the 44-year-old is one of the oldest militants. Sheikh has recycled into militancy two times and is on the radar of the security agencies since 2015, when he re-joined the militants after release from jail.

An old hand of Hizbul Mujahideen, Sheikh is believed to have switched over to The Resistance Front (TRF), which police say is a shadow group of Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT). In the past six years, he has escaped several times after breaking the security cordon.

According to the police sources, close to a dozen members of Sheikh’s family, including his brothers and nephew, joined militancy and have been killed in gunfights. His sister Naseema is under detention allegedly for helping militants.

Another militant on the list, Mohammad Ashraf Khan alias Moulvi, is from Tengpawa village in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district. The 43-year-old militant commander joined militancy in September 2016 and is associated with Hizbul Mujahideen. Khan is one of the senior Hizb commanders and was tipped to succeed its chief Dr Saifullah, who was killed in a gunfight in Srinagar in October 2020. After Saifullah’s killing, Hizb has not announced the name of its new operational commander in the valley and it could well be Khan.

Also on the list is Mohammad Saleem Parray alias Billa, who rose to prominence in 2017 immediately after he joined LeT. A resident of Hajin village in north Kashmir’s Bandipore district, the 26-year-old was part of the Lashkar module, mostly of foreigners, that turned Hajin as a militant hotbed in 2017 and 2018.

The other three old hands include Riyaz Ahmad Dar (33), Farooq Ahmad Bhat (40) and Mohammad Yousuf Dar (51). Riyaz is a resident of Sathergund village of south Kashmir’s Pulwama and joined militancy in 2015. He is associated with LeT.

Bhat also known as Umer is a resident of Yaripora village of south Kashmir’s Kulgam and joined the militant ranks in 2015. He is associated with Hizbul Mujahideen.Yousuf alias Kantur alias Issa is one of the oldest militants in the valley. The 51-year-old is from Check Kawoosa village in central Kashmir’s Budgam district. He joined militancy in 2017 and is associated with Hizbul Mujahideen.

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