Militants kill jawan in week's third offensive

Militants kill jawan in week's third offensive

In the third such incident within a week, militants on Saturday opened fire on two Army jawans, killing one and injuring the other at Pampore town in Pulwama district of south Kashmir. 

They also decamped with the service rifle of the deceased jawan, sources said.A police spokesman said the jawans deployed for Road Opening Party duty were withdrawing money from an ATM at 3 pm at Kadabal on the Srinagar-Jammu NH, 15 kms from here, when militants fired at them from point blank range.

Sepoy Deepak Kumar, who was hit on the head, died on his way to the hospital, while his colleague Trilok Nath, who received bullet wounds on his jaw, is undergoing treatment at the Army’s 92 Base Hospital.

The soldiers belong to the Army’s 50-Rashtriya Rifles battalion. Reports said panic gripped the area, as shopkeepers downed the shutters and traffic grounded to a halt.  Sources said militants took advantage of the confusion and ran away with the service rifle of the deceased Kumar.

A police official said army and police immediately cordoned off the area and a massive manhunt was launched to nab the assailants.

The attack came barely four days after two J&K police constables were shot dead by militants from point blank range in Pulwama and Kulgam areas of South Kashmir on July 3.

Meanwhile, the terror outfit Lashker-e-Toiba (LeT) has claimed responsibility for Saturday’s incident.

The vernacular news agency KNS, quoting LeT spokesman Dr Abdullah Gaznavi’s telephonic statement, said, “Our cadres killed one trooper and injured another in Pampore attack. We also snatched one assault rifle from the army.”

Dr Gaznavi also claimed that the outfit is responsible for the previous attacks on policemen in Pulwama and Kulgam.

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