SRINAGAR: A soldier and one Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist were killed in an anti-terror operation in south Kashmir’s
district on Tuesday morning, IGP (Kashmir Range) Vijay Kumar said. Three
, including two soldiers and a cop, were also injured in the fire exchange.
Sources identified the slain terrorist as Mudasir Rashid, a native of Pulwama’s Kakapora area who earlier worked for Northern Railways before joining terrorism in 2018.
Based on intelligence inputs about the presence of terrorists in Pulwama’s Goosu village, a joint team of Army’s 53 RR, CRPF and J&K Police launched a cordon-and-search operation in the area. As the security forces neared the suspected hideout, cooped-up ultras opened fire at the search party, triggering an encounter, IGP Kumar said.
In the initial fire exchange, two soldiers and a cop were injured. The trio was shifted to the Army hospital following which the gunbattle resumed, in which the Lashkar terrorist was killed and another soldier was injured, the IGP added. One of the injured soldiers succumbed later in the afternoon during treatment.
Later in the day, GOC of Srinagar-based Chinar Corps, Lt Gen BS Raju said that every death is unfortunate and an opportunity to surrender is given to even terrorists. In a short video uploaded on the official Twitter page of Chinar Corps (15 Corps), Lt Gen Raju said, “The deaths of the six-year-old boy who was killed in
(Anantnag) in the last week of June, as well as the recent Sopore (Baramulla) incident in which a 65-year-old man was killed, were unfortunate.” The video was posted with the caption: “Terrorists striking in populated areas seek civil casualties because that gets attention. Civilian deaths provide fodder to propaganda machines. Security forces show restraint. Even to the terrorists we always offer the choice to surrender.”
Lt Gen Raju said the Army has had a string of successful anti-terror operations in Kashmir. “The only way for a terrorist to get back at us is to strike and engage with us in populated areas. That’s what happened in Bijbehara and Sopore, both busy towns. In both cases, we had CRPF casualties and multiple (CRPF) injured,” he said. The GOC added that terrorists had used a mosque in the Sopore attack, which is a new phenomenon. “From the mosque, we recovered 60 rounds of empty cases. The initial rounds were used to target CRPF men and the rest 50 rounds were obviously fired with an aim to escape, but those rounds caused civilian casualty,” he said.