Four militants, two security personnel killed in Kashmir encounter 

Four militants, two security personnel killed in Kashmir encounter 

Security forces launched an anti-militancy operation in Laam forest of Tral area in Pulwama district following information about the presence of militants there.

Four Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) militants, a trooper and a policeman were killed in a fierce gun battle between security forces and ultras in Tral forests of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Tuesday.

A joint operation was started by army’s 42-Rashtriya Rifles, special operations group (SOG) of state police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) in Lam forest area of Tral after receiving tip-off about the presence of militants early on Tuesday morning, a police official said.

A soldier and a policeman were injured in the initial round of fire. Both the injured were shifted to a hospital where they succumbed, he said and added the militants managed to flee from the area after the initial bout of firing.

However, the official said, contact was again established with the militants in the forest area. “In the ensuing gunfight, four militants were killed,” he said, adding the identity of the slain militants was being ascertained and at least two of them appear to be foreigners, belonging to JeM outfit.

J&K police chief S P Vaid confirmed that four militants were killed in the encounter. The slain army personnel was identified as sepoy Ajay Kumar of 42-RR while the policeman was identified as Latif Gojr. Reports said clashes erupted in main town Tral after youth hurled rocks at a forces' vehicle. The forces responded by firing tear gas.

Earlier, 13 militants, five civilians and three soldiers were killed in one of the most violent days in Kashmir in recent years on April 1. 

After the killing of Burhan Wani, the face of new age militancy on July 8, 2016 south Kashmir has emerged as the bastion of not only militancy but anti-India protests. Wani was native of Tral and since then the area has seen frequent gun battles between the security forces and militants.

Security forces launched ‘Operation All Out’ to wipe out the militancy and killed nearly 220 militants in 2017. Even as the infiltration continued, around 124 locals joined militant ranks in 2017 and nearly 30 local boys have joined the militant ranks in first almost four months of 2018, police sources said.

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