Militants attack army patrol on second day of ceasefire

Militants attack army patrol on second day of ceasefire

Just two days after the Centre announced a unilateral ceasefire in Kashmir during the holy month of Ramzan, militants attacked a patrolling party of the army in the Hajin area of northern Bandipora district on Saturday morning.

Reports said the militants attacked a patrol party of 13 Rashtriya Rifles in Hajin, 32 km from here, early Saturday.

The army retaliated, resulting in a brief exchange of fire and soon searches were launched in the area.

The attack comes just on the second day of unilateral ceasefire announced by the Ministry of Home Affairs during Ramzan.

The ministry said the security forces, however, reserve the right to retaliate if attacked or if essential to protect the lives of innocent people.

On Friday, suspected militants decamped with three service rifles from a police post at Dalgate in heart of the Srinagar city. Earlier on Thursday, militants decamped with service rifle from a policeman near Kashmir University.

Militant outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba has already rejected the ceasefire announcement by calling it a "drama" while separatist leaders on Friday termed it as a "cosmetic measure".

New Delhi’s announcement came a week after Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said that the central government should consider a unilateral ceasefire in the state starting from Ramzan till the completion of the Amarnath yatra in August.

Earlier, in the year 2000, the then NDA government, headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee, had taken a similar initiative by announcing a unilateral suspension of ant-insurgency operations in the state during Ramzan, which continued for five months from November to May 2001.