LeT commander killed in J&K’s Pulwama

A commander of Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) militant outfit was killed by security forces in a brief shootout in Chakoora village of Litter in south Kashmir's Pulwama district on Wednesday, even as massive clashes erupted near the gunfight site.
Reports said the gunfight erupted after a joint team of the army, paramilitary, CRPF and Jammu and Kashmir Police cordoned off Chakoora, 35 kms from here, following ‘specific inputs’ about the presence of some militants in the area.
“As the searches were going on, militants fired upon which was retaliated in which LeT’s district commander for Pulwama, Irfan Sheikh was killed. One more militant is believed to have escaped from the cordon,” a police official said and added Sheikh was active since last few years.
The area is still under cordon to trace out the hiding militants, he said. 
Reports said intense clashes erupted in the area after the youth took to streets and pelted the forces with stones to disrupt the anti-militant operation. The forces lobbed tear gas shells to disperse to the stone-throwing protesters.
Following the routine, authorities suspended the mobile Internet service in Pulwama soon after the gunfight broke out.
Like last year, this year too security forces have been carrying out anti-militancy operations relentlessly and nearly 20 ultras were killed in January. In 2018, over 250 militants were killed in Kashmir which was the highest in a decade while 217 ultras were killed in 2017. 
Last year as many as 191 local youths reportedly joined various militant outfits in Kashmir which was 65 more than 2017. The new recruits mostly hailed from the restive south Kashmir region. 
However, the Army maintains that recruitment of local youth into militancy has seen a decline in Kashmir during the recent months.
Meanwhile, a CRPF personnel was injured after militants lobbed a grenade at the force camp in Laroo area of neighbouring Kulgam district.
Reports said the militants hurled a grenade on CRPF camp of 18 Battalion at Laroo area resulting in injuries to one paramilitary trooper. The injured was taken to nearby hospital while forces launched a hunt to nab the attackers.

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LeT commander killed in J&K’s Pulwama


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