3 jawans, 2 militants dead in LoC gunbattle

Second major infiltration bid by militants in a week

At least three soldiers and two militants were killed in a fierce gunbattle along the Line of Control (LoC) in north Kashmir’s frontier district of Kupwara on Wednesday.

The gunfight took place at Merapost in Nowgam sector, 120 km northwest of Srinagar city.
“Two terrorists and three armymen were killed during the gunfight, which resulted after a group of militants tried to infiltrate the LoC in the early hours of Wednesday,” the Srinagar-based defence spokesman, Lt Colonel J S Brar said.

He said the infiltration attempt was thwarted and search operation was still on.
Army sources said troops of 17 Jat regiment posted in the area noticed the movement of a group of heavily armed militants near Mera post. To push back the militants, army fired at them resulting into a fierce gunfight, which lasted around seven hours, they said and added intermittent firing was going on in the area.

“Three out of the five militants managed to flee back to Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir,” sources told Deccan Herald.

The army has recovered two AK assault rifles from the encounter site. The identity of the slain militants has not been established yet.

This is the second major infiltration bid foiled by the troops near the LoC within a week.
On Friday, troops shot dead four militants attempting to sneak into the Valley in Keran sector of Kupwara.

Desperate attempts

Army sources said that militants from across the LoC were making desperate attempts to ensure maximum infiltration before the traditional routes close due to snow.

The latest infiltration bids occurred in the wake of Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde recent statement that Pakistan was continuing to help militants infiltrate into India.

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