Cop-turned-ultra among two militants killed in Shopian

In the wake of the killing of the militants, the authorities suspended Internet services in Shopian, a common government practice, aimed to calm tensions and prevent anti-India demonstrations from being organized. (PTI file photo for representation)

A cop-turned militant was among two Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) ultras killed in a pre-dawn encounter with security forces in Satipora area of south Kashmir’s volatile Shopian district on Sunday.

A police official said on a credible input about the presence of militants in Satipora village of the district, 56 kilometres from here, a cordon-and-search-operation (CASO) was launched by the army’s 34-Rashtriya Rifles and special operations group of Jammu and Kashmir police during the wee hours of Friday.
 
He said the gunfight began after the militants fired upon a search party from a residential house, where they were hiding. “In the retaliatory action, two militants were killed,” he said and added that the bodies of the slain ultras were recovered along with as many weapons and other warlike stores.
 
Police identified the slain as Aadil Bashir Wani and Tari Ahmad, both locals affiliated with the LeT.  Ahmad was working as a special police officer (SPO) in J&K police before joining militancy on April 26 when he decamped with his service rifle.
 
In the wake of the killing of the militants, authorities suspended Internet services in Shopian, a common government practice, aimed to calm tensions and prevent anti-India demonstrations from being organized.
 
According to official figures, 80 militants have been killed this year while the number was 272 in 2018. Post the February 14 Pulwama fidayeen (suicide) attack, 48 militants have been killed, of them 25 belonging to Jaish-e-Mohammad outfit.
 
Pulwama and Shopian districts of south Kashmir have been the primary focus of the security forces this year so far as out of total 80 militants killed across the Valley, 43 were killed in these twin districts alone in 19 encounters, official data reveals. 
 
On Friday a militant from an Islamic State-inspired group was killed in a gun battle with security forces in Shopian. On May 3, Lateef Tiger, the only surviving militant of the Burhan Wani group, was killed along with his two associates in an encounter with security forces at Adkhara village of the same district.

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