J&K: Unidentified militant killed in Shopian gunfight

Acting on specific information about the presence of militants in the Narwani area of Shopian district of south Kashmir, the security forces launched a cordon-and-search operation on Friday morning, a police official said. (PTI File Photo)

An unidentified militant was killed in a pre-dawn encounter with security forces in the Narwani area of south Kashmir’s volatile Shopian district on Friday.

The encounter erupted after a joint team of Army, police and paramilitary CRPF men ring-fenced a huge orchard in Narwani, Imamsahab village in Shopian, 52 km from here, and started a search operation.

“As the operation was in progress, militants hiding in the orchard opened fire on the forces, which was retaliated leading to an encounter,” sources said and added that in the ensuing gunfight one militant was killed.
 
“The identity and group affiliation of the slain militant is being ascertained. Moreover, the search continues at the site of the encounter,” he added.

Since the beginning of this year, security forces have killed 125 militants, including top commanders of Hizb-ul-Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Toiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad and Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind outfits in “well-coordinated operations” in Kashmir.  

Last year, 272 militants were killed by security forces in the state while the number was 217 in 2017.

“Due to human intelligence supported by technical intelligence, security agencies are getting pin-point locations of the militants which makes the operations successful. In the coming months, the anti-militancy operations will step up further,” a senior police officer told DH.

Another feature of anti-militancy operations this year has been the least civilian causalities during the encounters. “The strategy to conduct pre-dawn anti-militancy operations has worked well. And with the help of increased human intelligence it was decided to launch pre-dawn operations due to which civilians, who earlier used to disrupt the operations, get least time to react,” security experts say.

Last week, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who was on a two-day visit to the state, directed the security forces to show zero tolerance towards terrorism and continue strict action against terror funding in Jammu and Kashmir.

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