3 militants killed in 1st encounter of 2021 in Kashmir

Three militants killed in first encounter of 2021 in Kashmir

On January 27, an army man was killed and three others were injured in an IED blast

Represenative image. Credit: PTI Photo

Three unidentified militants were killed in the first gun battle of 2021 in the valley between security forces and ultras in the volatile Tral area of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Friday.

The gunfight erupted after a joint team of the Army’s 42 Rashtriya Rifles and J&K police launched a cordon-and-search-operation (CASO) in Mandoora village of Tral, 32 km from Srinagar, on ‘specific information’ about the presence of militants in the area, a police official said.

As the search team of security forces approached towards the suspected spot, the hiding militants fired upon them. Forces retaliated, triggering an encounter, in which three unidentified militants were killed, he added.

Inspector General Police (IGP), Kashmir, Vijay Kumar confirmed that three militants were killed in a brief gunfight in Tral.

This was the first encounter between militants and security forces this year as no ultra had been killed so far in January 2021. However, on January 27, an army man was killed and three others were injured in an IED blast that was planted inside a school near Shamsipora in south Kashmir’s Kulgam district.

17 militants and two security forces personnel were killed in eight encounters in January 2020. Last year, 225 militants, including 46 commanders, and 60 security forces personnel, including 16 policemen were killed in over 103 anti-insurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir while 38 civilians had also lost their lives in militancy-related incidents. 

As many as 157 militants were killed in Kashmir in 2019 while the number was 257 in 2018 which was the highest in a decade.